DC Non-Profit Helps African American Seniors Manage Diabetes

Nov 20, 2015, 10:32 ET from Delmarva Foundation

WASHINGTON, Nov. 20, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Delmarva Foundation, the Medicare-funded healthcare quality improvement organization for the District of Columbia, is scoring major gains in enrolling African American Medicare beneficiaries in free Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) workshops in DC.

EDC workshops are led by certified peer leaders who emphasize peer learning using evidence-based curricula. The classes are open to all seniors and cover everything from symptom management, exercise, and healthy eating to strategies for working more effectively with healthcare providers. With support from the DC Department of Health and the DC Office on Aging, Delmarva Foundation has graduated 66 Medicare beneficiaries in the past 11 months at senior centers and senior apartment buildings.

Studies find the prevalence of diagnosed diabetes among African American is roughly 13.2% for both men and women, compared to 7.6 % for non-Hispanic whites. Prevalence rises dramatically with age, with the percentage of Americans age 65 and older with diagnosed and undiagnosed diabetes at 25.9%.

Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death and the most common cause of blindness, kidney failure, and amputations in adults, as well as a leading cause of heart disease and stroke. Delmarva Foundation is using November's American Diabetes Month to promote the availability of the free six-week workshops.                          

"The program empowers Medicare beneficiaries living with diabetes to take an active role in their health," according to Laura Benzel, Delmarva Foundation's Project Manager for Everyone with Diabetes Count. "When we see seniors transform and adopt a new attitude toward their health, we feel gratified to be part of their journey to a healthier lifestyle," Benzel concluded.

Delmarva Foundation is part of the Atlantic Quality Innovation Network (AQIN), a Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO), part of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' QIO Program. QIN-QIOs bring Medicare beneficiaries, providers, and communities together in data-driven initiatives that increase patient safety, make communities healthier, better coordinate post-hospital care, and improve clinical quality. To learn more about the free classes, visit www.atlanticquality.org or call 800-876-3362.

This material was prepared by the Atlantic Quality Innovation Network (AQIN), the Medicare Quality Innovation Network - Quality Improvement Organization for New York State, South Carolina, and the District of Columbia, under contract with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The contents do not necessarily reflect CMS policy. 11SOW-AQINDC-TskB.2-15-22



SOURCE Delmarva Foundation