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Health Department to Offer Diabetes Self-Management Education Series

Next series of Taking Care with Diabetes to begin in early fall

Post Date:09/11/2012 1:00 PM

DURHAM, N.C. – Area residents suffering with diabetes or pre-diabetes who want to take control of their life will soon be able to gain the knowledge to do so, thanks to the Durham County Health Department.

Taking Care with Diabetes, a Diabetes Self Management Education Program approved by the American Diabetes Association, empowers participants with tips on how to improve blood sugar and hemoglobin A1C levels, as well as ways to make eating and physical activity more enjoyable. In addition, participants also learn about reducing stress levels and weight management.

Before a class starts, the program coordinator meets with each person individually to discuss her or his lifestyle and specific goals for taking part in the program.

Currently, the Health Department runs four 2-hour classes that a participant can join at any point in the cycle. The classes are fun and include lots of interaction among group members. Three months after the classes, there is a final session, where participants have a chance to their check progress toward goals and address any new concerns.

“Class members tell us how much they learn, and we can see how effective they are by the changes we see in long-term blood sugar levels, cholesterol and weight,” says Jennifer Russ, the certified program coordinator and dietitian for the program. “When people control these factors, they improve their health. Ultimately, we want to help them reduce long-term complications and live a longer, healthier life.”

“Taking Care with Diabetes is a wonderful value for Durham residents,” notes Michele Easterling, Nutrition Division Director. “Many health insurance companies cover the program, and there is a small sliding fee scale for those that do not.”

The next series of Taking Care with Diabetes will begin early this fall. Participants must have a referral from a physician to join. Durham County Health Department staff will gladly help to coordinate the referral process.

For more information about Taking Care with Diabetes contact Russ at (919) 560-7788 or e-mail

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