WINNSBORO — Any resident who has pre-diabetes or is considered at risk for developing Type 2 diabetes is eligible to participate in a weekly group program beginning March 15 at Fairfield Memorial Hospital.
The program will focus on lifestyle changes to help prevent the onset of diabetes, which can lead to serious health issues and complications.
Groups will meet weekly for 16 sessions, then monthly for six follow-up sessions, and will be led by Earnestine Williams, certified diabetes educator and Starr Connor, a registered nurse. Participation is geared to adults 18 years and older. Meetings will begin at 6 p.m.
Registration is $40, or $2 per session. Those “graduating” from the class receive a $20 honorarium.
“Our Diabetes Education Center at FMH is one of few hospitals to be awarded this grant from SC DHEC to offer the National Diabetes Prevention Program, a CDC evidence based program that demonstrate small changes in lifestyle can prevent diabetes,” Williams said. “This program will give those at risk for diabetes the tools and support with lifestyle coaching by medical professionals to make needed changes.”
Dr. Charles McElmurray, medical director of the John A. Martin Primary Health Care Center, said diabetes and hypertension are major health problems in the community.
“Much of diabetes management is self-care. The physician can prescribe medication, and the dietitian can provide resources,” he said. “However it is ultimately up to the individual to take control of their health. Individuals have to manage their health, and education is one of the key components of the treatment of diabetes. It is one of the underutilized services we have in the community. We are very fortune to have a diabetic education center to provide information and education to the community. It is a great resource and we need to use it.”
Call the Fairfield Diabetes Education Center at 803-712-0364 to register.