State of Delaware’s Diabetes Control Program (DCP)

Division of Public Health 
Diabetes Control Program

Delaware's Diabetes Control Program (DCP) was established in 1997 with the mission
to decrease the state's emotional, physical, and financial burden of diabetes by
preventing the disease and reducing its complications. The program is currently
funded as part of Delaware Health and Social Services, Division of Public Heath
through a grant from the Centers for Disease Control and the Delaware Health Fund.

Why plan for older adults?
Over 90 percent of diabetes is Type 2 and most cases of Type 2 Diabetes occur in
people over age 50. In 1998, almost 94 percent of all deaths attributed to diabetes
occurred in Delawareans over age 55. Current research suggests that the prevalence
of diabetes among older adults is expected to increase, paralleling trends that project
a growth in the aging population during the next 20 years.
Diabetes is serious and its management often poses a challenge for older adults due
to multiple factors, including the high cost of medications, self-management supplies
(meters, strips, etc.) and other related medical needs. For some, limited public
transportation in both rural and urban areas is often cited as an obstacle that
significantly reduces access to medical care and services.
For adults age 65 and over with diabetes, Medicare provides substantial medical
benefits including self-management supplies and education. Some older adults,
however, are unaware of these and related Medicare benefits. Currently, almost 25
percent of Medicare funds are utilized for managing diabetes and treating
complications. For those adults (ages 50-64) who are not yet eligible for Medicare, the
costs associated with diabetes management, coupled with inadequate health
insurance coverage and a lack of pharmacy benefits, impact and often impede access
to optimal services and care for this at-risk population.
In view of the trends and barriers that complicate the management and control of
diabetes among older adults, diabetes education and prevention efforts will continue to
play a key role in reducing the burden of diabetes among vulnerable and at-risk
populations and in eliminating health disparities. To prevent and better manage
diabetes among older Delawareans, it is vital that we collaborate to develop and
implement effective strategies that address the prevention and self-management needs
of this growing population. To support this effort, existing resources and programs
should be expanded and new services provided.

The Goal:
• Enhance and provide effective programs and services that target adults age 50
and older.
• Focus on the prevention, management, and control of diabetes and the promotion of
healthy lifestyles.
• Focus on increasing educational outreach and awareness to at-risk populations.
• Provide culturally sensitive and community-based services.

Outcome Measures: BY 2010
• Increase the number of screenings for diabetes and pre-diabetes at community
centers, senior centers, health fairs, faith communities, etc.
• Increase awareness of Medicare benefits for diabetes management supplies
and education
• Reduce prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes
• Reduce mortality from diabetes by 10%
• Reduce complications of diabetes by 10%

Action Steps:
1. Develop one core prevention and management program for older adults that
recognizes age differences, cultural needs, and functional abilities/disabilities.
Activate at 24 sites. BY 2004
2. Develop and activate three media campaigns to include education and awareness
on pre-diabetes, prevention and lifestyle changes, self-management awareness,
and testing for diabetes that reach members of at-risk populations. BY 2004
3. Distribute the Delaware Diabetes Resource Guide to 100 percent of Delaware
senior centers, senior residential communities and assisted living facilities.
Regularly update and print resource guides. BY 2005
4. Increase the number of Certified Diabetes Educators (CDEs) by four and Registered
Dietitians (RDs) by two who are ethnically and racially representative of the at-risk
populations, and who can provide diabetes self-management education to older
adults. BY 2005
5. Provide information about Medicare benefits for self-management supplies and
services to 100 percent of adults age 65 years and older. BY 2004
6. Ensure that financial costs related to diabetes management (pharmaceutical
supplies, diabetes education, and medical services) are covered for 75 percent of
older adults with diabetes. BY 2010
“Back in 1987 my wife noticed I was going to the bathroom in the middle of the night and I had
never done that before. She also noticed I was also drinking more liquids than normal. She
asked me if anyone in my family had diabetes and I told her no. She said I might have diabetes.
So after work I went to the doctor and he put me right in the hospital. My glucose was 452.
Today my diabetes is under control and since I’m retired I enjoy helping other people stay in
control of their diabetes.” — Chuck Royal, Laurel
7. Provide 15 sites for diabetes screenings in community settings. BY 2004
8. Secure two affordable transportation sources for access to medical services for
older adults in rural Sussex County. BY 2005
9. Seek and secure federal, state, local and community funding for actions steps 1
through 8. ONGOING

Resources for Action:
• American Diabetes Association
Educational resources for diabetes management and prevention
888-342-9074 or
• Delaware Diabetes Coalition
Resource guide for diabetes self-management
• Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) Diabetes Control Program
Community based programs and resources
• Division of Services for Aging and Adults with Physical Disabilities (DSAAPD)
Education, Speakers, Support Groups
800-223-9074, 302-255-9390 or
• Quality Insights of Delaware
Education Resources, workshops on Medicare benefits and prevention services
866-475-9669 or

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