Vision & Diabetic Program

A diabetic patient who changes their diet could eliminate the need for some medications. A 2008 News & World Report article states that the number of people with diabetes has increased by 13.5% since 2005. 10% of Louisianans have been told they have diabetes. That is 2 % higher than the rate for the whole United States. In Louisiana there are 39 diabetes deaths per 100,000 people and 25/100,000 in the U.S. overall (2005 Statehealthfacts.org).

One of the goals of the Pool of Siloam Diabetic Program is to provide our patients with health education opportunities that could change their habits toward healthier living with greater attention to their medical needs. This clinic was our first specialized program. Approximately 40% of our patients have diabetes. Together patients and volunteers address the aspects of personal care that reduce the affects of diabetes on their health, such as a safe and healthy home environment, blood glucose monitoring, proper nutrition, exercise and medication dosing.

The Pool also offers a monthly diabetic eye clinic. Diabetes is the most common cause of blindness for people under the age of 65. The American Diabetes Association recommends eye exams at least once a year for people with diabetes. With these regular exams we can recognize changes in the eyes before they lead to visual loss. The patient can be treated and the present level of vision can be maintained or even improved.