GATE CITY — The Health Wagon announced Friday that it will increase its efforts to battle diabetes in Appalachia with the help of a $200,000 grant it received from the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation.
The grant will be used to support the Health Wagon’s “Decreasing the Prevalence of Diabetes in Southwest Virginia” program.
That initiative is designed to help manage diabetes, decrease risk factors, and support screening initiatives to identify and treat new diabetics.
Health Wagon Executive Director Teresa Gardner said the grant funding will improve the delivery of health care for patients in Southwest Virginia who need it.
“The Health Wagon is honored to receive support from the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation to support our diabetes program. This donation promotes and enhances access to health care delivery for citizens of Southwest Virginia,” Gardner said. “The donation supports the Health Wagon to continue valuable and needed services.”
Diabetes has become an epidemic in Southwest Virginia, Gardner said, resulting in increased morbidity and mortality rates for its residents.
Gardner said the Health Wagon hopes to change the course of debilitating disease with the assistance of the Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield Foundation grant.
In addition to allowing the Health Wagon to screen over 3,000 patients for diabetes, Gardner said the grant will also assist in providing care for the current diabetes population.
Diabetics will also be able to receive educational services on therapeutic lifestyle changes, and the grant funds will also provide chronic care management utilizing evidenced-based chronic care models.