Center for Healthy Living offers diabetes education resources

Each year, November is observed as National Diabetes Month to raise awareness and bring attention to diabetes and the effects it has on the millions of people living with the disease.

The prevalence of the disease supports the need for ongoing education and support for those who have been diagnosed as well as their caregivers. Center for Healthy Living team members have knowledge and skills to help those with diabetes better understand the disease and live a healthier life. Some of the team members’ specific skill sets offer even more to those with diabetes.

Certified diabetes educator

Suzanne Rossiter, registered nurse and certified diabetes educator at the Center for Healthy Living provides benefits-eligible faculty and staff and their covered dependents a wealth of knowledge and assistance. Rossiter is certified through the National Certification Board for Diabetes Educators and has met eligibility criteria of maintaining a professional license (registered nurse), possessing at least 1,000 practice hours of diabetes self-management education, having at least 15 continuing education credits related to diabetes and successfully passing a board certification exam.

As a certified diabetes educator and a certified health and wellness coach, Rossiter uses her comprehensive knowledge of and experience in pre-diabetes, diabetes prevention and management to educate and support people affected by diabetes.

“I feel having Type 1 diabetes myself helps me to better connect with my clients and understand from a personal level where they are coming from,” Rossiter said. “I work with clients to promote self-management to achieve individualized behavioral and treatment goals that optimize health outcomes and help them better manage their condition. Self-care behaviors such as glucose testing, healthy eating, physical activity, stress management and medication management are emphasized.”

Registered dietitian

Ellen Welch, registered dietitian at the Center for Healthy Living, is available to assist patients looking for in-depth assistance with all things food and nutrition. By choosing the right foods, not only can those with diabetes help control blood sugars but also can protect their heart and maintain a healthy weight. With so many food choices and recommendations, it can be challenging to decide which foods to eat. Welch is ready to help and even assists with the “Dishing it Up Diabetes Style” workshop series that the Center offers each year that focuses on diabetes-friendly recipes and foods. The 2016 “Dishing it Up Diabetes Style” workshop schedule will be shared closer to the start date.

Pharmacist

Kamal Singh, PharmD, the Center for Healthy Living’s pharmacist, is on site to provide medication therapy management and assist patients with all their medication needs. Singh, is available to answer any questions someone might have in regards to their diabetes medications. Singh works with patients’ primary care physicians and / or endocrinologists to ensure each patient’s medication list is appropriate and the most cost-effective for him or her.

Additional resources

As mentioned above, the Center hosts workshops specific to diabetes-friendly meal planning and foods. The workshops provide additional support to those who are in need of recipe ideas or those who simply want to learn more about the types of foods that make the most sense to incorporate into their daily lifestyles.

Another educational tool that the Center for Healthy Living offers is the “Living with Diabetes” program. The primary objective of this 12-week, comprehensive program is to share essential education and support so participants can manage their condition, stay healthy and prevent complications. Participants will gain the educational tools needed for success and develop a plan to become an active partner with his or her health care providers.

The next “Living with Diabetes” program begins Aug. 22 and offers several options to fit a variety of schedules. Participants can choose from one of the following classroom sessions:

Mondays, Aug. 22 through Nov. 14, noon–12:50 p.m. or 2-3 p.m., Hall for Discovery and Learning Research (DLR), Room 143A

Thursdays, Aug. 25 through Nov. 17, 8–9 a.m. or noon–12:50 p.m., France A. Córdova Recreational Sports Center (CoRec), Wellness Conference Room

To register, call the Center at 49-45505 by July 29.

The Center is open for provider appointments Monday through Thursday, 7 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. and Friday 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Lab hours are 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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