Using technology to combat an age-old disease
November is National Diabetes Awareness Month
By Lissette Campos-Perez, Contributing Correspondent, TBBW
Every year, diabetes costs Americans an estimated $237 billion in medical bills, according to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s a chronic disease that’s, silently, at work causing heart disease, stroke, kidney failure, blindness and amputations of toes, feet and legs.
“When we see the data from our members’ annual health screenings, more than 30% of them have either diabetes or pre-diabetes,” says Steve Presser, president and chief operating officer of BeniComp Health Solutions. “It’s even more alarming when the majority of them have no idea they may be just a year away from a lifetime of chronic disease medication.”
BeniComp’s Preventive Health Management team has taken advantage of National Diabetes Awareness Month, to sound the alarm, and stress the importance, of early intervention. There are more than 88 million adults in the U.S. with pre-diabetes and 1 in 3 of them don’t know they have it.
“People are realizing the benefits of what can be accomplished from home through software and virtual methods. A great example is our annual health screenings. We get 96% participation. We can identify the risks for each person based on their possible underlying conditions. We engage with people through our software so they can speak with health coaches, or start seeing a trainer virtually, for preventative care,” explains Presser.
That’s a game-changer for the employee and employer. “When we can help them prevent diabetes altogether, by addressing the risk through lifestyle adjustments, we’re changing a person’s life and we’re creating savings of $12,000 – $15,000 a year in medications.”