Patients will have a chance to learn about the services and classes Naval Medical Center Camp Lejeune offers to help manage diabetes during the Diabetes Awareness Glucometer Exchange event being held 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Nov. 18-22, at NMCCL.
During the event, patients seen at NMCCL will be able to bring in their current Precision Glucometers and exchange them for a new FreeStyle version. The swap allows patients to manage their sugars when the Department of Defense shifts glucometers and supplies to FreeStyle.
“Blood sugar monitoring with a glucometer is a cornerstone of diabetes management,” said U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Robert Eberly, a physician at NMCCL. “We are using Diabetes Awareness Month for the glucometer exchange as a way to break down barriers for our patients by re-acquainting them with the breadth of services offered by NMCCL and giving them an opportunity to speak with our Diabetes educator and our clinical pharmacists who assist in management and education of our diabetics.”
Aside from updating patients’ glucose monitors, Eberly hopes the event will bring to light the various educational classes NMCCL offers, not just during Diabetes Awareness Month. For instance, a Heart Health class is held on the third Thursday of each month, with the next class taking place Jan. 15 at 1 p.m. due to holidays. Heart health and diabetes are closely related, Eberly explained.
“While we are used to hearing more about the outward signs of the disease that are more apparent like worsening vision and decreased blood flow to the legs with infections and wounds that do not heal, it is important for patients to realize that similar damage is occurring to the blood vessels of the heart,” Eberly said. “Over time this cumulative damage increases the incidence of cardiovascular disease and heart attacks.”
NMCCL recognizing Diabetes Awareness Month is a way to help bring clarity to the complexity.
“I always tell my patients that information is power to not only manage their disease but to also minimize its impact in their daily life,” Eberly said. “Having a month devoted to diabetes awareness is a great opportunity to re-engage patients that may have felt hopeless or overwhelmed by the disease.”
To register for any of the Health Promotions and Wellness classes, call (910) 451-3712.