Caring for Our Healers: 1199 SEIU Diabetes Prevention Program
Diabetes Prevention and Management
April 8, 2015
Although health care workers provide essential services for the health care system, a recent study found that hospital employees are more likely to require treatment for chronic diseases, such as diabetes, and less likely to receive preventive care than non-health care workers.
Approximately 35% of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Worker East members in New York City have prediabetes, the precursor to diabetes. The evidence-based National Diabetes Prevention Program (NDPP) helps participants with prediabetes develop lifestyle skills and behaviors that can reduce their risk of developing diabetes by 50%. NYSHealth awarded the Healthcare Industry Grant Corporation, on behalf of 1199SEIU Labor Management Initiatives, a grant to offer 1199SEIU members the NDPP.
Under this grant, Healthcare Industry Grant Corporation established a pilot program to offer the NDPP to 1199SEIU members at their worksites. Workers were screened at health care facilities to identify and enroll those with prediabetes into the NDPP. The State University of New York at Albany’s Quality and Technical Assistance Center provided training and supervision to union workers from the health care workforce to become lifestyle coaches and deliver the NDPP. A project coordinator was hired to oversee the pilot program’s implementation, which included identifying members with prediabetes, managing referrals, organizing lifestyle coach training, coordinating classes, and ensuring participation. In addition, a labor management committee, comprising key representatives from both the union and management, guided and supported key aspects of the program, which included addressing barriers for workers to enrolling in and completing the NDPP.