Together on Diabetes-NYC: A Community Control Project for Seniors
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Together on Diabetes-NYC is a community program in Washington Heights/Inwood to help seniors with diabetes to live well by gaining or maintaining control of their diabetes and minimizing the risks of serious complications.
The United Hospital Fund, with grant support from the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation, has organized a wide variety of community partners in Washington Heights/Inwood—senior service programs, health care providers, faith-based organizations, and businesses—to develop this first-of-its-kind diabetes program specifically focused on seniors.
Since its launch in May 2012, Together on Diabetes-NYC has enrolled more than 1,600 seniors with diabetes living in Washington Heights/Inwood.
Once enrolled in Together on Diabetes-NYC, seniors are connected to a variety of programs and services near their homes, including educational and support groups, cooking classes, individual coaching, and exercise classes. Together on Diabetes-NYC provides ongoing support to participating seniors to help them achieve their individual goals.
Using a secure, private database, Together on Diabetes-NYC also monitors progress over time through the periodic assessment of self-care behaviors and disease management, as well as measuring participants' perceptions of overall health and quality of life. Since its inception, the program has documented improvements in practices essential to good diabetes management, including following a healthy diet and adhering to medication regimens. More important, these changes have been sustained over time.
Seniors can be referred to the program by anyone in the community—primary care physician practices or clinics, senior service agencies, religious leaders, self-referral, friends or relatives. (The project’s phone number is 1-855-585-5888; its website address is www.togetherondiabetesnyc.org.)
Partners, Sponsors, Funders
Together on Diabetes-NYC is sponsored by United Hospital Fund, which received a three-year, $2.8 million grant to support the program from the Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation as part of the Foundation’s national effort to tackle diabetes called Together on Diabetes: Communities Uniting to Meet America’s Diabetes Challenge.
The program includes a broad partnership of community, health care, faith-based, and civic organizations, as well as pharmacies and other local businesses. In addition, the New York City Department for the Aging and the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, both long concerned about diabetes, are working closely with the Together on Diabetes-NYC project, which, if successful, could be replicated in the other communities throughout New York City. See the current list of partners.
Contact: Deborah Halper
Resources for family caregivers and health care providers are available at our Next Step in Care website.