Atrius Health was honored to be represented at last week’s World Diabetes Day Program at the State House during which Dr. Joe Kimura, Atrius Health CMO, was among the distinguished speakers who discussed the serious public health crisis and financial implications caused by diabetes.
Dr. Kimura joined a number of legislators including Sen. James Welch (Chair of the Joint Committee on Health Care Financing), Sen. Jason Lewis (Chair of the Joint Committee on Public Health), Sen. Tom McGee, and Rep. Dan Cullinane, as well as representatives from the Massachusetts Association of Diabetes Educators, and a patient living with Type 1 Diabetes to promote House Bill 3871 – An Act Relative to Diabetes Prevention.
“It is certainly a privilege to join my colleagues today to highlight the important work that needs to be done to advance the health of our citizens and healthcare provided within our Commonwealth. Successful diabetes care and prevention requires a coordinated effort involving every aspect of our communities,” Kimura said.
Dr. Kimura stressed the importance of screening and early detection as he recounted the prevalence of diabetes among Atrius Health’s patient population. He also discussed the future for many of these patients if these issues are not addressed head-on. He shared the following statistics:
These sobering statistics illustrate the many challenges that providers face in caring for patients with diabetes and in preventing pre-diabetic patients from facing the long-standing health issues associated with diabetes. In addition to these health challenges, the downstream costs to the healthcare system are staggering.
“Our greatest challenge and biggest opportunity is to prevent more people from developing diabetes, particularly those at high risk,” Kimura said. He shared some of the innovative work being implemented by staff at Atrius Health to address our diabetic patients including:
Dr. Kimura received a loud round of applause from those in attendance when he noted that Atrius Health supports coordinated efforts to improve diabetes management and prevention such as reducing financial co-payments & deductible barriers for preventive care. “Let’s make it as easy as possible for people who are motivated to do the right things – to be able to do the right thing!”