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Polk County Health Department to Hold “Diabetes Screening Day”

Posted January 02, 2013 in Web Exclusives

On Wednesday, January 9 from 8-11:00 am, Polk County Health Department will hold a “Diabetes Screening Day” at 1907 Carpenter Avenue in Des Moines where you can get a free diabetes screening and access to resources to manage or prevent diabetes.

“Untreated diabetes can cause debilitating consequences that can affect your every-day life such as losing a foot or leg to amputation or becoming blind. Imagine not being able to take your dog for a walk, not reading to your grandchild a bedtime story, or not having a healthy baby,” said Rick Kozin, Polk County Health Department Director.

At Diabetes Screening Day you will get a free blood glucose screening and get connected to resources and programs that can help you better manage or prevent diabetes. If you have diabetes you can live a normal life by improving nutrition, using medications appropriately, and incorporating physical activity into every day.

“We know that early detection of diabetes symptoms and treatment can decrease the chance of complications from diabetes. But, we also know people need information and a plan to improve their eating and activity habits,” said Leah Gabriel, ARNP, Polk County Health Department Nurse Practitioner.

According to the Iowa Department of Public Health there are 120,000 people in Iowa who are living with diabetes and don’t know it and an additional 670,000 people in Iowa who have pre-diabetes. The main reason that many cases of diabetes do not get diagnosed is because many of the symptoms seem so harmless. Symptoms include frequent urination, excessive thirst, extreme hunger, unusual weight loss, fatigue, irritability, and blurry vision.

Screenings will be available, free of charge, to any Polk County resident. It is recommended that you fast for 8 hours and bring all prescriptions and over the counter medications that you are taking. Patients diagnosed with diabetes could be eligible for free care, except for medications. You will also receive assistance in finding additional free or reduced-cost medication and supplies.

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