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According to a recent survey of consumers in its five-state footprint, Meijer found that half of all people with diabetes feel overwhelmed by managing the disease and do not have a personal care plan to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle.
The survey, which included people with both types of diabetes, as well as people at risk for developing Type 2 diabetes, cited motivation as a challenge to taking control of their health, and said they struggle most with nutrition and diet.
As part of American Diabetes Month, Meijer launched a new online destination to provide customers with diabetes resources like a risk assessment test and information on nutrition, exercise and medication management to help create personal care plans. The site is part of a continued commitment by Meijer to provide its shoppers with convenient access to diabetes care resources both in and out of the store.
“While the challenges of managing diabetes or being at risk for the disease can sometimes seem overwhelming, there are many places consumers can turn to get answers to their questions, like your local pharmacist,” said Nat Love, VP of Meijer Drug Store. “Nearly 40 percent of those surveyed told us that, in addition to regular doctor visits, they are more willing to talk with pharmacists and find that walk-in clinical services are convenient for getting extra support in developing their personal care plan for diabetes.”
The survey also found that nearly 90 percent of respondents could not fully identify the complications that could result from not managing the disease, which include heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, blindness and kidney disease.
“November is American Diabetes Month and we are spreading the word about diabetes and the importance of prevention and management of the disease," said Debra O’Leary, senior executive director of the American Diabetes Association. “Diabetes is a serious disease and we’re proud that Meijer has shown a significant commitment in the movement to Stop Diabetes through diabetes education, prevention and care.”
With pharmacies in all of its stores, Meijer provides convenient support for people needing diabetes care. In addition to its fresh produce and other healthy food options, the retailer has a diabetes care section in front of its pharmacies that offer the following support services to help customers manage their needs:
• Specially-Trained Diabetes Pharmacists: Meijer pharmacists are specially trained to support diabetes health and they can help customers with medications, testing and more.
• Free Metformin Immediate Release: Meijer launched its free pharmacy program in 2006 and since that time has helped save Midwest families more than $230 million in prescription costs. Meijer provides free Metformin, the drug most commonly used in treating type 2 Diabetes, for customers with a prescription.
• Assistance with Medicare Part B Changes: Meijer pharmacists are available to help customers adjust to recent Medicare changes involving mail-order purchases of diabetes test strips and glucometers. They are available to help complete necessary paperwork and continue to accept Medicare Part B for diabetes testing supplies.
• Glucose and Health Screenings: Meijer provides free in-store glucose testing, as well as other health tests to customers.
• Healthy Living Advisors: Meijer has a team of registered dieticians who offer advice on diabetes-friendly foods and recipes, along with nutritional and exercise tips for leading a healthy lifestyle.
“The opportunity to talk with someone without having to make an appointment, as well as having access to quality foods, medications and resources that they need to live a healthy life, is especially worthwhile and can make a difference in helping stay motivated,” Love said.
Grand Rapids, Mich.-based Meijer operates 203 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky.