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Healthy Bay Encourages People to Know their Risk for Diabetes

March 27, 2017

Healthy Bay Encourages People to Know their Risk for Diabetes 

March 27, 2017

DOH-Bay is promoting the American Diabetes Association Alert Day to bring awareness to prediabetes. 

Panama City, Fla.— The Florida Department of Health in Bay County’s Healthy Bay Diabetes Services program is encouraging participation in the American Diabetes Association Alert Day on March 28. An estimated 86 million Americans have prediabetes, and 90 percent of them don’t know they have it. Prediabetes can lead to type 2 diabetes, but unlike Type 2 diabetes, prediabetes can be reversed with healthy lifestyles changes.

“Diabetes is the most preventable disease in our county with one out of three citizens in Bay County having diabetes or prediabetes” said Florida Department of Health in Bay County’s Administrator Douglas M. Kent, MPH.  “We can stop this epidemic by taking self-responsibility and become proactive in maintaining healthy lifestyles supported by diet, exercise and weight management. This generation can help stop amputations, blindness and cardiovascular disease that result from diabetes that affect our love ones”. 

Healthy Bay encourages residents to “know their numbers” including fasting blood sugar. This measures your risk for diabetes. Prediabetes means our blood glucose (sugar) is higher than normal, but not yet diabetes. A fasting blood sugar number above 101-125 is considered pre-diabetic. A random blood sugar between 141 to 199 is considered prediabetes.

The Community Health Task Force and the Florida Department of Health in Bay County will be offering FREE blood sugar checks as part of the Community Health Improvement Plan. 4/4 Your Health will also provide blood pressure, cholesterol and heart rate checks. We are hoping to confirm a few more locations soon, as of now the following locations will offer the screenings on April 4 from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.:

  1. AD Harris
  2. Bear Creek Fire Station
  3. Bay County Government Center
  4. Florida Department of Health in Bay County
  5. Frank Brown Park
  6. Gulf Coast State College
  7. Life Management Center
  8. City of Lynn Haven
  9. Panama City Beach Chamber of Commerce
  10. Panama City Mall
  11. Piggly Wiggly on 15th Street
  12. Piggly Wiggly in Fountain
  13. Walgreens in Callaway
  14. Walgreens in Lynn Haven
  15. Winn Dixie at Transmitter Rd and Highway 231

One of the main contributing factors to diabetes is being overweight. Nearly 64% of Bay County residents are overweight or obese. Other risk factors include; having a family history of diabetes, having gestational diabetes or a baby weighing more than 9 pounds at birth, having a diagnosis of high blood pressure, or lack of physical activity. Only 16.6% of Bay County adults participate in enough aerobic and muscle strengthening exercises to meet guidelines. You can find out where you stand by visiting the website and taking the one-minute risk test. A score of 5 or higher means test-takers should seek medical advice.

Healthy Bay offers the evidence-based CDC Diabetes Prevention Program, DPP. DPP is a year-long lifestyle change program that focuses on people losing five-percent of their body weight and working up to 150 minutes of physical activity. This is proven to delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes by more than 50%. An independent study of the program showed that participants met or exceeded their weight-loss and physical activity goals.

Healthy Bay also offers diabetes screenings with an appointment Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Most insurance plans cover the screenings; some also cover the DPP program. Potential patients can get a referral from their physician or call the Healthy Bay division at 850-872-4455, option 3, then option 1.

About the Florida Department of Health

The department, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote and improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

Follow us on Twitter at @HealthyFla and on Facebook. For more information about the Florida Department of Health please visit

About the Community Health Task Force

The goal of Community Health Task Force is to develop and implement comprehensive, community-based health promotion and wellness programs in the Bay County area.

For more information about the Community Health Task Force please visit Like us on Facebook at