Free «Diabetes Advocacy Campaign» UK Essay Sample
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Diabetes is a disease in which a person experiences situations of a high blood glucose level either because the body cells fail to respond to insulin or because the insulin production does not correspond to the required levels (Samuel, Johnson, Braxton, & Lackey, 2014). Diabetes can also occur in an individual due to a combination of both factors. There are two types of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is a form of disease characterized by the condition in which the body does not produce insulin at all, while type 2 diabetes is when the organism fails to produce enough insulin. In the United States, diabetes is the most prevalent disease, with African Americans as the most vulnerable population group. According to the latest statistics, about 18% of African Americans suffer from diabetes (Hankerson & Weissman, 2012). Drawing upon the contemporary research, representatives of this minority are twice likely to develop the disease as compared to Caucasian Americans. The worrying statistics is that when African Americans develop diabetes, they are at a higher risk of developing complications that lead to disability and even death in contrast to Caucasian Americans and other ethnicities. Therefore, the paper reviews this health concern with relation to African Americans on the basis of a few diabetes-prevention programs and proposes a course of action to address the issue.
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Diabetes Advocacy Programs
As a result of the high prevalence of diabetes among African Americans, several programs have been developed to reduce the disease rates and its impacts. One of such programs is a project by the American Diabetes Association. The program is faith-based and majorly targets African Americans. The program entails six workshops each of which is facilitated by a representative of the American Diabetes Association (Hankerson & Weissman, 2012).
The program begins with a Diabetes day during which the participants are informed about the risk factors, reducing the risks of diabetes, and the seriousness of the disease. Afterwards, they are then taken through ‘Power over Diabetes’ in order to provide the individuals with basic information about the disease and its treatment. The next workshop is ‘Fit and Faithful in Body and Soul’ that is held to teach them physical activity exercises and weight management. During the subsequent session, the participants are presented with ‘Taste and See’ opportunities explaining a necessity of healthy eating. The next workshop, ‘A Clean Heart,’ is developed to help create a good relationship with people suffering from diabetes. The final workshop is on ‘Train up a Child’ relates to increasing awareness on type 2 diabetes (Hankerson & Weissman, 2012).
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Another program targeting African Americans is the Joslin Diabetes Program. Joslin Diabetes Center undertakes several programs to benefit the target population suffering from diabetes. One of the programs is Provider education. The project aims at engagement of family members who take care of diabetes relatives and providing them with diabetes education training. Joslin Diabetes Program also entails a community outreach (Giusti & Rizzotto, 2006). The program achieves its objectives by carrying out train-the-trainer initiative. In the initiative, African Americans are trained concerning diabetes and its key characteristics. The program also carries out church-based awareness campaigns that come with free diabetes screening followed by education. For the program to remain relevant to its course, it carries continuous research on the state of diabetes among African Americans in order to identify new needs and challenges.
The power project is effective due to the involvement of the community. The intervention involves church leaders and a representative of American Diabetes Association. The church leaders are close to the people, and hence, at a better position to gain trust of the target audience. In addition, the program provides participants with the needed materials and some giveaways. Joslin Diabetes program also succeeds due to its structure. In particular, the project involves church members who carry out the screening and education in the church. In its train-the-trainers initiative, the campaign engages the leaders of African American groups who have a greater respect command that any other person in the group.
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My Plan for a Health Advocacy Campaign
Diabetes is a lifestyle disease that results from the failure of a body to produce insulin at all, produce enough of the substance, or combining both risk factors (Samuel et al., 2014). Diabetes has been on the rise among African Americans since the highest number of diabetes-related deaths has been reported for this population segment. Hence, an action needs to be taken in order to minimize the consequences of this health concern among this vulnerable minority. To address this issue, I propose the development of a policy on the grounds of regular physical activity and modest weight management as a way to reduce the prevalence of the disease or delay diabetes.
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The objectives of this policy are to engage African Americans in physical activity since childhood at least four times per week. By keeping fit, they will protect themselves from the disease, to a great extent. The second objective of the policy is to ensure that African Americans manage their weight efficiently, and so, none of them will be categorized as overweight. These measures will be likely to prevent diabetes.
I will pass my message about the policy to the Department of Health by writing proposals. In particular, I will develop a detailed proposal about the program and send it to policymakers at the national level. In this way, I will also officially request for an opportunity to present the proposal in person. As soon as I will get an approval, I will create a PowerPoint presentation to convince the authorities on the need to implement the policy.
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As a justification for the policy, I will use the evidence of a nationwide survey that showed that 50% percent of African American men and 67% of women reported the participation in little or no physical activity during their leisure time (Hankerson & Weissman, 2012). Thus, African Americans have demonstrated a high tendency in developing upper-body fats.