November is National Diabetes Month, and while the holidays may be all about getting closer to family, Mississippians with diabetes must be extra mindful of social distancing this year.
According to the CDC, diabetes has been an underlying condition for approximately four in 10 COVID-19 patients with the disease present in approximately half of those under 65 who have died from the disease.
This makes diabetes self-care more important than ever, said Dr. Lillian Lien, director of the University of Mississippi Medical Center’s endocrinology division, adding that insulin needs can spike unexpectedly during a COVID infection.
“While good blood glucose control has always mattered, the pandemic brings extra motivation,” she said. “We are seeing that patients with both diabetes and COVID-19 experience longer and more difficult hospital stays and a higher risk of death.”
That’s why the work of the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi is especially important now.
“It ensures that Mississippians with diabetes can access what they need to take the best care of themselves,” Lien said.
Indeed, we at the DFM want all Mississippians with diabetes, type 1 or type 2, to know that we are here to teach you to how to live with diabetes, support you in times of crisis and be an emergency resource when you don’t know where to turn. Although we may be gathering virtually or socially distanced this Thanksgiving, we can toast the fact that a vaccine seems to be in sight!
For more information, please visit msdiabetes.org.
Ben Seale, M.D., is president of the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi Board of Directors.