Disease & Education Support for BCBSAZ Medicare Members


The Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program (MDPP)

Medicare has developed a prevention program to help patients understand their risk for developing diabetes and become educated on how to prevent it through behavior changes. The Medicare Diabetes Prevention Program (MDPP) is a structured, evidence-based health behavior change intervention with the goal to prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes among those diagnosed with pre-diabetes.

  • The program provides:
  • Practical training in long-term dietary change
  • Increased physical activity
  • Problem-solving strategies for overcoming challenges to sustaining weight loss and a healthy lifestyle.
  • To participate, the following requirements must be met for eligibility:
  • No previous diagnosis of diabetes
  • Body Mass Index (BMI) of 25 or greater
  • A1C of 5.7% to 6.4% (39 to 46 mmol/mol)
  • No life-threatening conditions, mobility issues, etc., that would prohibit you from participating in the full curriculum

MDPP Providers in Arizona

Several BCBSAZ providers within Arizona are currently enrolled in a program to meet stringent standards to become certified diabetes providers and coaches. Only certified providers will be able to bill Medicare for services related to this diabetes prevention program.

To date, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified the following BCBSAZ provider(s) as having “Achieved Full Recognition” – please contact the provider(s) directly for more information:

Sun Health Center for Health & Wellbeing
14719 W. Grand Ave
Surprise, AZ 85374
Phone: 623-471-9355
Website: https://www.sunhealthwellness.org/pre-diabetes/

What Can I Do To Prevent Diabetes?

Diabetes is a disease in which the body’s ability to produce or respond to the hormone insulin is impaired, resulting in abnormal metabolism of carbohydrates and elevated levels of glucose in the blood and urine. (Oxford Dictionaries, ©Oxford University Press)

  • Did You Know?
  • 25% of Americans age 65 or older currently have type 2 diabetes
  • A weight loss of 5% can reduce your risk of diabetes by 58%? 1
  • Type 2 diabetes is on the rise and may account for 90% of diagnosed diabetes cases

According to the American Diabetes Association (ADA), having a family history of diabetes is an important reason to understand your risk of developing the disease. Some symptoms may include:

  • Urinating often
  • Feeling very thirsty
  • Feeling very hungry (even though you are eating)
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Blurry vision
  • Cuts/bruises that are slow to heal
  • Tingling, pain, or numbness in the hands/feet (type 2)

Awareness and prevention are key. The ADA offers a simple Type 2 Diabetes Risk Test for a quick assessment and to help you understand your risk of developing the disease.

If you are wondering if you are at risk for developing diabetes, contact your primary care provider (PCP) for further testing. You will be able to work with your PCP to determine if you are a candidate to be referred to this Medicare-eligible program and a certified diabetes provider and coach. Only certified providers will be able to bill Medicare for services related to this diabetes prevention program.

Diabetes Education

In the meantime, learn more about the risks of developing the disease through local educational classes and diabetes support groups. You will learn about self-management skills, including glucose monitoring, medications, nutrition, meal planning, exercise, and how to prevent complications.

BCBSAZ, in collaboration with area agencies, offers several classes to help participants gain awareness, motivation, and skills to improve or maintain good health and well-being. Classes are free to BCBSAZ members and may require pre-registration.

Find a class near you here.

Additional Resources

The American Diabetes Association (ADA)

The ADA published a guide, Living Healthy with Diabetes: A guide for adults 55 and up, which includes diabetes basics, how to make healthy food choices, understanding the role of physical activity, preventing and treating complications, and resources.
Learn more at: www.diabetes.org

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

The CDC published its latest report, Diabetes 2017 Report Card, which discusses the latest status of diabetes and its complications in the U.S. It also calls out specific statistics by state – for instance, the percentage of US adults aged 18 or older with diagnosed diabetes in Arizona totals 9.1%.
Learn more at: www.cdc.gov
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Diabetes Report Card 2017. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US Dept of Health and Human Services; 2018.

The Diabetes Council.com

This site is maintained by several health care professionals who collect and vet diabetes-related information for the purpose of educating the audience about the disease. From general facts, risk factors, and exercises to diet, clinical trials, and support, this site provides a variety of resources to help you become knowledgeable about diabetes. For those over the age of 60, this helpful article discusses “The Elderly and Diabetes: Everything you need to Know
Learn more at: https://www.thediabetescouncil.com

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

Diabetes is a disease that affects millions of people worldwide. To learn how the U.S. and other countries are working together to create awareness, provide prevention education and, ultimately, to help find a cure, go to www.idf.org.