NEW YORK, Aug. 1, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- EmblemHealth, the largest New York-based health insurer, will enroll up to 100 people this year into a program proven to reduce the risk of developing diabetes by half, through weight loss, increased activity and positive lifestyle changes.
EmblemHealth is participating in the National Diabetes Prevention Program to teach members threatened by the disease the habits and techniques necessary to avoid diabetes and lead healthier lives. Diabetes is an epidemic in New York City, especially in African-American and Hispanic communities.
"Obesity, poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle are among the major risk factors for type 2 diabetes. It is preventable and people with pre-diabetes can turn their lives around with proven results," said Eliza Ng, M.D., Senior Medical Director at EmblemHealth.
The National Diabetes Prevention Program has been proven effective in studies conducted by the National Institutes of Health and supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Participants who made modest lifestyle behavior changes, such as better food choices and increased exercise, lost 5 - 7 percent body weight and decreased their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58 percent.
EmblemHealth is coordinating the program with Manhattan's Physician Group and Queens-Long Island Medical Group, both part of AdvantageCare Physicians, to identify eligible individuals to participate in the program. EmblemHealth will implement this program at EmblemHealth Neighborhood Care in Harlem and Cambria Heights, Queens. All lifestyle coaches are trained in the CDC curriculum. After this initial implementation, EmblemHealth plans to expand its offering of the National Diabetes Prevention Program to all members.
Participants in the program will meet as a group and with a dedicated lifestyle coach. The group setting provides a supportive environment with people who are facing similar challenges and trying to make the same changes. Together, participants can celebrate their successes and strategize ways to overcome obstacles.
This program is offered in collaboration with and funding from the CDC and America's Health Insurance Plans as part of the National Diabetes Prevention Program.
EmblemHealth, Inc., through its companies Group Health Incorporated (GHI) and HIP Health Plan of New York (HIP), provides quality health care coverage and administrative services to approximately 3.4 million people. Groups and individuals can choose from a variety of PPO, EPO and HMO plans, as well as coverage for prescription drugs and dental and vision care. EmblemHealth offers a choice of networks, including quality doctors and other health care professionals throughout the region, leading acute care hospitals across the tristate area, and physicians and hospitals across all 50 states. For more information, visit www.emblemhealth.com.
About AdvantageCare Physicians
AdvantageCare Physicians, P.C. is one of the largest physician-led practices in the New York Metropolitan Area, with more than 425 primary care physicians and specialists in 39 locations. These conveniently located community-based medical destinations provide coordinated quality care and support culturally competent care delivery. They provide access to health and wellness education and health screenings, to help patients assess health risks and to make informed choices.
About the National Diabetes Prevention Program
The CDC-led National Diabetes Prevention Program is a lifestyle change program to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes. Research shows that modest behavior changes, such as making better food choices and increasing physical activity, reduced the risk of developing type 2 diabetes by 58 percent in people at high risk for developing this disease. The National Diabetes Prevention Program brings together federal agencies, community-based organizations, employers, insurers, health care professionals, academia, and other stakeholders to prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes among people with pre-diabetes. www.cdc.gov/diabetes/prevention.