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Diabetes Prevalence in Newport News Virginia

Diabetes is an endocrine disease which is characterized by high sugar levels in the blood than normal. For a normal human being, blood sugar levels range between 110g/dl of blood to 140g/dl of blood which may rise to 120ml/dl. If the sugar level rises above the healthy condition level, it may be considered to be pre-diabetic or on a prevalence to be diabetic if the sugar levels rise up to 200g/dl of blood in which one is declared to be diabetic. There are three types of diabetes, that is, type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes (National Diabetes Education Forum, 2011;Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011)

When the condition is uncontrolled, it may lead to severe conditions to the patient. One may suffer from kidney disease, nerve damages, lower limb amputation, heart disease, stroke, adult blindness, uncontrolled urination and even death. Diabetes in human beings may be caused by one being obese, having high cholesterol in blood, having high blood pressure, being above the age of 65 years, inheritance from the family (family history to be diabetic) and lastly when one is physically inactive (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011)

Prevalence of a disease in a population is the number of persons in the population with the disease. When taking diabetes into account, diabetes prevalence is the analysis of the number of persons in a population who are diabetic. Prevalence rate of diabetes is a percentage that shows the exposure of a percentage in a population to be diabetic at a given point in time. It’s reached out by getting the number of people in a population with an existing condition of diabetes and the number of new cases reported at a time (US. Virginia Department of Health, 2009)

In general, United States of America has been having many cases of diabetic citizens partly due to depressions and physical inactivity. There is an estimate of 25.8 million diabetic Americans including 7 million who are not aware that they have the disease. Also, there is an estimated 79 million adults above the age of 20 years who have the prevalence of being diabetic due to high sugar level in their blood which is still in a tolerable state (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011)

Newport News is an independent city in United States of America. It is located on the Hampton roads of Virginia, South Western end of the Virginia Peninsula. The city’s boundaries follow James River from the Skiffe’s creek to the estuaries at Newport News port’s harbor (Newport News, 2011)

Diabetes is a disease with a high prevalence in Newport News Virginia. It has been a disease which has accounted to many deaths in the city. From epidemiological data on Diabetes in the city, there are approximately 400,000 adults who are diabetic, another 198,000 adults who are diabetic but do not know their condition and an amazing 1.2 million adults who have the conditions that expose them to high risks of being diabetic (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011)

In New Port News, adults above the age of 20 years have been more prevalent to diabetes. Their percentage rate has been increasing significantly since 2001. There have been new diabetes cases being reported each year with 2001 having the highest rate of 6.0% to 2007 which had a rate of 8.0%. The rates are above those of United States of America’s which was 7.8% in 2007. This shows that New Port News constitutes more diabetes cases in USA’S population compared to other cities (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011)

Research has shown that prevalence to diabetes in New Port News is highly dependable on age, sex/gender, race, income levels and levels of education (Virginia Mason Medical Centre, 2011) Females are more prevalent to diabetes than males. This is justified by the statistics which support the argument whereby, diabetes prevalence in female population has grown to reach 8.3% in 2007 compared to 7.6% of male population (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011) Comparing diabetes prevalence on racial and ethnic platform, blacks have been found to be more prevalent followed by whites and lastly Spanish. This trend has been consistent from year to year since 2001 (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011)

House hold incomes have a great impact on diabetes cases in New Port News and Virginia in general. As the house hold income increases, the cases of diabetes decrease. From research analysis in 2007, there was a diabetes prevalence rate of 14.3% for households which earned an income of less than $ 15,000. The rate reduces drastically to 5.1% to families which earned more than $50,000 (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011).

The similar effects of income were seen on education whereby, as the levels of education of a person increased, there prevalence to diabetes decreased. People with less than high school education had a prevalence rate of 15.1% which reduced to 5.1% on college graduates (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011).

Age is a major prevalent factor to diabetes. As one becomes older they become more open to diabetes. There are many cases of people with diabetes above the age of 65 years compared to the lower age brackets (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011)

Diabetes is costly in Viriginia which is the leading 6th cause of deaths among Virginians.  It has been very much costing to the US’s economy with $227 million dollars being used on diabetes cases in Virginia. There were 11,880 discharges in Virginian’s hospitals with cases related to diabetes (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011)

Diabetes has been considered a preventable disease in the city. This is due to the fact that, from the diagnoses done on diabetes, the adults report having high blood pressure, high cholesterol in the body and engaging in less activity which is contrary to Virginian adults who are diabetic free (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2011)

According to the goal and objectives of happy people 2020, it aims to reduce the disease and economic burdens of diabetes and improve on the quality of life for all persons who have or are at the risk of diabetes. To achieve the goal, there are various objectives that were put forth to assist in the vision. That is, to reduce the annual number of cases of people diagnosed with diabetes in the population, reduce the death rates among the population with diabetes, reduce the rate of lower extremity amputations in persons diagnosed with diabetes, improve glycemic control amongst the population with diagnosed diabetes and increase prevention behaviors in persons at risk for diabetes with pre-diabetes. Unless there is a change in tactics to deal with the situation of ensuring a happy living by the year 2020, United States of America may not be able to achieve the vision (US. Healthy People, 2011)

This is due to the fact that; the number of persons diagnosed with diabetes has been increasing significantly from 2001 by a rate which is not less than 5.1%. This is in contrary with one of the objectives of happy living 2020 which aims to reduce diabetic cases. Also, another objective of happy living 2020 has not been achieved since its inception which aims to reduce the mortality rate among people living with diabetes. Virginia has been recording an insignificant decrease in mortality rates among diabetic persons. Since the year 1999 the number of people who die from diabetes has reduced by two basis points from 24 deaths per 100,000 to 22 deaths per 100,000. This made the disease to be declared the sixth leading cause of death in the city (Virginia Diabetes and Statistics, 2011)

Prevention is better than cure. Unless the department of health in Virginia looks at its policies to change the situation, the achievement of happy people 2020 objectives in Virginia may remain to be a dream. Stakeholders need to reduce the number of new diabetes cases.

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