By Lauren Poteat, NNPA Newswire Washington Correspondent
On a mission to combat issues of diabetes, which disproportionately afflicts Black Americans nationwide, the National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA), the trade association for more than 215 of the nation’s leading Black media companies, moderated a very important conversation surrounding the chronic condition and its ongoing negative impacts on people of color.
Panelists participating in a high-energy January 24th discussion, held during the NNPA’s Mid-Winter Conference, vehemently pushed for people of color to actively “get ahead” of their health. The panel was moderated by Bishop Elton Amos, MD, founder of Church of God In Christ’s Global Health and Wellness Initiative, in cooperation with Eli Lilly and Company. The panel also featured two executives from Eli Lilly: Nate Miles, VP Strategic Initiatives, State Government Affairs and Tanisha Blake, Associate Brand Manager, Payer Marketing.
“We have to get ahead of our health,” said Bishop Amos, whose organization is devoted to promoting healthy lifestyles among minorities. “Diabetes is still a major issue for people of color. We have to start utilizing our doctors more, getting tested regularly and working better on balancing and maintaining healthy lifestyles.”
The American Heart Association cites diabetes as one of three major dangerous health conditions (along with high blood pressure and obesity) that play a vital role in increasing the chances of succumbing to heart disease and strokes.
Additionally, the American Diabetes Association reports that 13.2 percent of all Black Americans aged 20 years or older have been diagnosed with diabetes. Blacks are 1.7 times more likely than their white counterparts to suffer from the disease.
In an attempt to combat diabetes, Eli Lilly and Company, a global pharmaceutical corporation and leader in diabetes management, announced the recent opening of their Lilly Diabetes Solution Center and Helpline, crafted particularly for Black Americans.
The announcement was received enthusiastically by NNPA’s Chairman, Chicago Crusader Publisher, Dorothy R. Leavell and others in attendance. “Eli Lilly and Company has taken big steps to develop a solution center for diabetes,” Chairman Leavell said. “This center will help our people gain access to affordable insulin and valuable resources and also provide cost savings solutions and free clinic information.”
Dedicated to making sure that no one has to pay full price for insulin, the new Lilly Diabetes Solution Center and Helpline prides itself on being a solution-oriented program that grants relief for those who are not insured, are underinsured or have high out-of-pocket expenses.
With a longstanding reputation for pouring into communities of color, the Lilly organization has also donated insulin to three relief agencies that serve communities of color globally, particularly in the U.S.: Americares, Direct Relief and Dispensary of Hope,and has distributed insulin to over 150 free clinics around the country.
“This new helpline alone, will help people get direct access to affordable diabetic healthcare,” Leavell said. “It will help link them directly to clinics in their local communities that can help and will provide information on how to go about utilizing resources. We are really working hard to get this information out to all of our publishers and we thank Eli Lilly and Company for this initiative.”
To learn more about the Lilly Diabetes Solution Center and Helpline, visit: Lilly Diabetes Solution Center and Helpline.