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Format: 04/17/2014
Format: 04/17/2014

News

Allegheny Health Network Turns (Blue) Spotlight on Devastation of Diabetes

Friday, November 8th, 2013

Allegheny Health Network physicians and diabetes educators will paint the town blue to help shed light on the epidemic of diabetes.
 
In an effort to increase global awareness about diabetes, the World Health Organization and International Diabetes Federation designated Nov. 14 as World Diabetes Day. Since 2007, these entities have urged the world to light buildings blue to attract attention to the impact of diabetes across the globe.
 
Locally, Allegheny Health Network representatives will take part in a ceremony with Pittsburgh City Council on November 12 to officially proclaim November 14 World Diabetes Day in Pittsburgh. In addition, Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald will present a World Diabetes Day Proclamation to the group to acknowledging the day county-wide.
 
Beginning the 12th through the end of the month, many Allegheny Health Network hospitals will use blue lighting to acknowledge the toll that diabetes takes in our region and the world.
 
Allegheny General Hospital (AGH) will light its South Tower blue, blue floodlights will illuminate the entrance of Allegheny Valley Hospital and Forbes Hospital will turn the large sign atop the hospital blue. West Penn Hospital will deck its Friendship Avenue entrance with blue lights and Canonsburg Hospital is using blue bows to commemorate World Diabetes Day on its campus. These medical facilities join several iconic landmarks— Fifth Avenue Place, the Gulf Tower and the Carnegie Science Center’s weather dome— that will turn blue in late November to raise awareness of diabetes epidemic.
 
“There’s much that can be done to prevent and manage diabetes,” said Patricia Bononi, MD, medical director of the Joslin Diabetes Center affiliates at Allegheny Health Network. “We hope to educate the public about the important roles that nutrition and exercise play in maintaining good health and encourage people to be screened so that they can avoid the health complications caused by diabetes.”
 
Dr. Bononi is part of a multidisciplinary diabetes awareness committee within the network.
 
In addition to adopting a blue hue, the committee will offer free diabetes risk assessments and consultations with registered dietitians, exercise physiologists, pharmacists and certified diabetes educators outside the cafeterias at AGH, West Penn, Allegheny Valley, Forbes, Canonsburg and Jefferson hospitals from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on November 14. Healthy “blue light specials” will be available for lunch that day in those hospital cafeterias and free copies of diabetes-friendly recipes will be offered to patrons.
 
Allegheny Health Network also will be a major sponsor of the American Diabetes Association’s Diabetes Expo at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center on Saturday, November 9. Allegheny Health Network medical professionals will present informative lectures at the event, including talks on foot care, diabetes nutrition, eye care and wound care.
 
It is estimated that more than 349 million people in the world have diabetes. Approximately 1 in 3 U.S. citizens born after 2000 will be affected by diabetes during their lifetimes. Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death among Americans. Each year, more than 200,000 deaths are reported as being caused by diabetes or its complications.
 
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