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Florida Health in Seminole County Recognizes National Diabetes Month and World Diabetes Day

By Mirna Chamorro

November 07, 2018

Sanford, Fla.—The Florida Department of Health in Seminole County (DOH-Seminole) will conduct diabetes screenings throughout the month of November in recognition of National Diabetes Month. National Diabetes Month is observed every year to raise awareness about diabetes and promote the importance of taking steps to confront diabetes as a critical health issue. World Diabetes Day is observed on November 14th and this year’s theme is The Family and Diabetes. The campaign aims to raise awareness of the impact that diabetes has on the family and support network of those affected, as well as promote the role of the family in the management, care, prevention and education of diabetes.

“We are very excited that our health department now offers the Diabetes Self-Management Education program as well as the Diabetes Prevention Program. These programs are excellent educational and interactive tools to prevent and manage diabetes as well as provide a support system for families, said Donna Walsh, health officer for the Florida Department of Health in Seminole County. “Know the symptoms of diabetes, and if you have a family history of diabetes which can be a risk factor, consult with your doctor, get tested and learn to maintain your diabetes.”

The Florida Department of Health in Seminole County is offering the National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP) at its Sanford location and is now enrolling participants for this free program. The DPP is a year-long lifestyle change program developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help people who have prediabetes reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. DPP consists of 16 weekly sessions followed by at least 6 monthly maintenance sessions. Programs that are recognized or pending recognition by the CDC have shown they provide quality services that maintain evidence base practices.

DOH-Seminole is also now offering Diabetes Self-Management Education (DSME) for individuals that have been diagnosed with diabetes. DSME consists of 10 hours of individualized instruction provided by a healthcare professional, such as a nurse or dietitian, who has received continuing education in diabetes. Topics covered include healthy eating, physical activity, monitoring blood sugar, taking medication, problem-solving, healthy coping and reducing risks. The goal of DSME is to increase participants’ knowledge, reduce complications and improve health and wellbeing.

For more information about diabetes screening times or if you are interested in registering for the DPP or DSME program, please contact Herronda Mortimer, DPP Coordinator at (407) 665-3011 or by email at or Emily Haller, DSME Coordinator at (407) 665-3339 or by email at

In Florida, it is estimated that over 2.4 million people have diabetes and over 5.8 million have prediabetes, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States. The number of people diagnosed with diabetes has more than tripled in the last 20 years in the U.S.

There isn’t a cure yet for diabetes, but a healthy lifestyle can reduce its impact on your life. Thanks to better treatments, people with diabetes are now living longer—and with a better quality of life—than ever before. A blood test from your health care provider can determine if you have diabetes. Early treatment can prevent serious problems that diabetes can cause, such as loss of eyesight or kidney damage.

About the Florida Department of Health

The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

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