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University of Iowa News Release


Nov. 7, 2008

Screening, prevention can help stem diabetes rate

Specialists with University of Iowa Health Care know that diabetes is the leading cause of kidney disease, blindness and amputations.

Unfortunately, nearly 25 percent of people who have the disease don't even know it.

This November, during American Diabetes Month, UI specialists want to help change that.

Chances are, you, or someone you love, has been affected by diabetes. It is the biggest public health crisis of the 21st century, and it continues to grow to epidemic proportions. Nearly 24 million children and adults in the United States have the disease. The death rate for diabetes has continued to increase since 1987, while the death rates due to heart disease, stroke and cancer have declined.

At UI Hospitals and Clinics, a special program called REACH (Reaching Euglycemia And Comprehensive Health) provides free diabetes screening for people who are uncertain about their risks for diabetes.

REACH offers an eight-week prevention program for people at risk for developing type 2 diabetes, especially those who have pre-diabetes. People with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes may also participate.

REACH is designed to help people achieve euglycemia or "normal" blood sugar, to prevent or delay the onset of diabetes and prevent complications associated with diabetes. The program features an intensive lifestyle intervention including:

--Support for making life-long changes to improve blood sugar control and health.
--Individualized supervised exercise program.
--Opportunities to learn from experts in the field of diabetes.
--Dietary recommendations.

For an appointment for the free diabetes screening, call UI Health Access at 319-384-8442 or toll free 1-800-777-8442. For more information about the REACH eight-week program, call the Department of Rehabilitation Therapies at 319-356-2663. To learn more about the myths and facts of diabetes, visit

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa Health Care Marketing and Communications, 200 Hawkins Drive, Room E110 GH, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1009

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Moore, 319-356-3945,