Diabetes tests offered for free - Brownsville Herald: Local News

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Diabetes tests offered for free

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Posted: Monday, March 26, 2001 12:00 am

By MELISSA SATTLEY

The Monitor

McALLEN Health officials in the Rio Grande Valley will offer free diabetes

screenings during a diabetes alert campaign March 28-30.

Diabetes alert days are part of a national campaign sponsored by the American

Diabetes Association to reach people who may have the disease but never have

been tested.

About 16 million people in the United States and one of every five people in

South Texas are estimated to have diabetes, but at least 8 million dont know

they have it, said Diana Ramirez, district manager for the American Diabetes

Association in McAllen

We want people to know that if they think they are at risk of developing

diabetes, they should get tested, she said.

To help get the word out, the U.S Postal Service will release a 34-cent stamp

advertising diabetes awareness in conjunction with the national campaign.

Anything that can raise awareness about diabetes is a help, Ramirez said.

Greg Saenz, a registered dietitian at the Diabetes and Wound Management

Center, said that the rate for diabetes is especially high in the Valley.

People need to get screened so that they can prevent long-term complications

like blindness, amputations and kidney failure, he said.

For more information about diabetes, contact the American Diabetes Association

at 631-1118.

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