Journey to a Healthier Me: is a diabetes prevention program offered by Cabarrus Health Alliance in partnership with health departments and community organizations in Rowan, Gaston, Catawba, Mecklenburg and Iredell county.
This program utilizes a CDC-approved curriculum (Prevent T2) designed to provide participants with the skills needed to create positive lifestyle changes which includes but is not limited to weight loss, increase in physical activity, and stress management.
Prediabetes is a condition where people have higher than normal blood glucose levels (mg/dl), but their mg/dl is not yet high enough to be diagnosed as diabetes. Nationally, an estimated 88 million American adults have prediabetes, but only about 10% of them know it. African Americans, Hispanics, American Indians, Alaska Natives, Asians, Native Hawaiians, and other Pacific Islanders are at higher risk than non-Hispanic whites for developing type 2 diabetes (CDC, Diabetes Report 2020).
In 2018, an estimated 2.4 million adults in North Carolina had prediabetes. In that same year, 12.1% of respondents to a Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System survey indicated that they had been told by a doctor or other health professional that they had prediabetes or borderline diabetes. Of those respondents, 39.6% were racial and ethnic minorities (African Americans: 15.2%; Hispanic/Latinos: 11.1%; and other racial and ethnic minorities: 13.3%). (North Carolina State Center for Health Statistics, BRFSS 2018).
In 2016, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that 145 adults in North Carolina develop diabetes daily (Community and Clinical Connections for Prevention and Health, Fact Sheet 2019). Without lifestyle changes to improve their health, many people living with prediabetes are more likely to develop type 2 diabetes within five years (CDC, Prediabetes Fact Sheet 2020).
Total direct medical expenses for diagnosed and undiagnosed diabetes, prediabetes, and gestational diabetes in North Carolina was estimated at $7.7 billion in 2017 (American Diabetes Association). Implementing NC MDPP improves early detection and treatment of prediabetes and help slow the projected increase in type 2 diabetes prevalence and expenditure in North Carolina. NC MDPP is offered in Spanish and English and has adapted to a virtual format during COVID-19.
The Minority Diabetes Prevention Program (MDPP) at Cabarrus Health Alliance (CHA) works with community members to facilitate lifestyle change classes that are based on PreventT2 Curriculum by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Before the class, the participants receive an A1C screening. The participants then work with the lifestyle coaches through ____ sessions over 1 year.
MDPP also conducts diabetes prevention screening events, makes referrals to Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support (DSMES).
The MDPP program serves those in the community that is at least 18 years of age. The majority of those who participate are of underrepresented communities and qualify based on a blood test completed in the past year.
Through marketing for prediabetes awareness and working closely with partnerships, the MDPP works with individuals to create lasting lifestyle changes that will positively impact the participants' health and wellbeing.