National Diabetes Prevention Program Now Covered by Medicare

Diabetes Prevention Program - Holland Hospital

Diabetes affects more than 25 percent of Americans ages 65 or older, according to the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS), if current trends continue, this percentage is projected to double for all U.S. adults (ages 18-79) by 2050. Not only is diabetes a growing disease but it is also extremely expensive. In 2016, the CMS estimates Medicare spent $42 billion more on beneficiaries with diabetes than it would have spent if they did not have the disease.

The majority of people with diabetes have type 2, which is associated with older age, family history of the disease, previous history of gestational diabetes, physical inactivity, obesity and ethnicity. In type 2 diabetes, the pancreas usually makes enough insulin, but the body does not use it correctly.

More than 1/3 of Michigan adults are at risk for type 2 diabetes. What many don’t realize, is that modest lifestyle changes and ongoing education can go a long way toward preventing diabetes and improving overall health and wellness. For this reason, the CMS is expanding its services and recognizing the National Diabetes Prevention Program (NDPP) as a covered benefit for Medicare patients.

“One of the main barriers to seeking out education for diabetes prevention is cost. The expansion of the NDPP as a covered benefit for Medicare recipients addresses that barrier,” said Julie Husmann, Holland Hospital’s Center for Good Health and Diabetes Programs Manager. “Holland Hospital will now be able to touch more lives in our diabetes prevention efforts, thus reducing the health risks of residents in our community and the surrounding area.”

Holland Hospital is one of few area locations to offer access to the Center for Disease Control & Prevention-Recognized NDPP program. The program is specifically designed for those at risk for, or already diagnosed with, prediabetes. Medicare members must have already been diagnosed with prediabetes to enroll.

“It is a joy as a Registered Dietitian and trained Lifestyle Coach to be a part of the transformation of people who are fully committed to the process of lifestyle change,” Husmann said.

The NDPP touches on every aspect of life that affects the risk for type 2 diabetes and provides not only the base knowledge necessary to understand that risk, but the practical, hands-on tools to change those risk factors.

“It is very exciting to see CMS support the efforts of the National Diabetes Prevention Program and appreciate the benefits to their insured members,” Husmann said.

A free information session is scheduled for Monday, October 22, from 6 -7 pm at the Center for Good Health. The community is encouraged to attend and learn more about these programs.

For more information about the Center for Good Health and the Diabetes Prevention Program, visit the Center for Good Health online or call (616) 394-3344.


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