The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently ruled that certified Diabetes Prevention Programs are a covered benefit, removing a longtime barrier to getting patients into the beneficial programs.
Diabetes Prevention Programs are CDC-recognized programs that provide a supportive environment where participants work in small groups to learn healthier eating skills and increase physical activity to reduce their risk of developing diabetes.
The program, which is led by a trained lifestyle coach in a classroom setting, is delivered over a 12-month period, beginning with 16 weekly sessions followed by eight monthly maintenance sessions.
The programs have been shown to reduce the incidence of type 2 diabetes in pre-diabetic patients by nearly 60 percent. Locally, the Greater Wichita YMCA offers a recognized DPP.
Potential participants may qualify for the DPP by 1) being at least 18 years old, 2) being overweight and 3) by being either at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes by a consensus screening tool or having blood glucose levels in the prediabetic range.
For more information on local DPPs, as well as to take the free online prediabetes screening test, visit www.preventdiabeteswichita.com.
Health ICT, an MSSC affiliate, can provide free technical assistance to providers interested in developing a standardized process of identifying patients at risk for diabetes and referring them to the DPP. To learn more, contact Matt Thibault at 316-683-9441 or MattThibault@med-soc.org.