Mar 2017 04:33:29 GMT
Mark’s Note: This nurse’s comments in a local paper ring true. One of the drivers of our sky high medical costs is the Diabetes epidemic in our country. She is correct also that the newsmedia needs to pay more attention and help educate the public. Use caution when purchasing used test strips.
I am writing in regard to the Feb. 24 online article “Diabetic test strip prices spur shady secondhand market.” As a registered nurse, I wish to commend you on on your diligence to shed light on a public health issue.
Diabetes mellitus is a huge concern in Lancaster County and the surrounding areas; roughly 15 percent of people in Lancaster have diabetes. Diabetes is a multifocal problem. Patients are more likely to have high blood pressure, a stroke, heart disease, blindness, poor circulation to the lower extremities, and even mortality.
Per 100,000 people in Lancaster, 362 will die as a result of diabetes. When diabetes is poorly managed, the risks for complications greatly increase. It is extremely important for diabetics to always have the supplies they need to control their blood sugars.
As your article mentioned, supplies are often too costly to buy. This leaves patients buying cheaper, expired supplies that may be faulty.
Nationally, we spend $174 billion annually on diabetic care. This number will continue to rise as more people are diagnosed with diabetes. I urge you to continue to write well-informed articles on diabetes, obesity and high blood pressure. We can bring more awareness to the disease by sharing these alarming statistics.
Rather then just writing on the cost of the disease, I encourage you to increase the knowledge of Lancaster residents. The newspaper is a prime opportunity to educate people who are at high risk for diabetes and how they can decrease their risk. We must try to decrease our rates of countywide diabetes or we will continue to see these problems.