Baton Rouge, La. (Nov. 11, 2020) – Diabetes is the most common underlying condition among COVID-19-related deaths in Louisiana, a state that ranks among the worst in the nation in diabetes diagnoses, according to the Louisiana Department of Health. In recognition of National Diabetes Awareness Month, throughout the month of November, Louisiana Healthcare Connections is promoting the importance of proactive diabetes management.
“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to negatively affect our state, and those with diabetes have a higher risk of complications and death,” said Stewart Gordon, MD, Chief Medical Officer for Louisiana Healthcare Connections. “When the condition is managed appropriately, these risks are decreased. We want everyone to take precautions to keep themselves safe in this pandemic, but we want to emphasize those precautions for individuals with diabetes, and to encourage them to work closely with their physicians to manage their conditions.”
Gordon shared the following COVID-19 precautionary recommendations for individuals with diabetes:
- Be aware of the symptoms of COVID-19, like fever, shortness of breath, dry cough and fatigue. If you experience these symptoms, contact your physician as soon as possible.
- Monitor blood glucose levels closely as elevated blood sugar levels may indicate infection. The most ideal times to perform these checks are before and after meals, at bedtime and before exercising.
- Follow all recommended safety guidelines, including wearing a face mask, washing your hands regularly and social distancing.
- Avoid close contact with anyone who is displaying symptoms of a respiratory illness, or anyone who has recently been exposed to COVID-19.
- Follow your physician’s recommendations for medications, diet and exercise.
“The most important thing you can do is to talk to your doctor about your risks and how to protect
yourself,” Gordon said. “Your doctor can help you to understand how you can improve your health and
reduce your risks during this pandemic.”
To learn more about diabetes risk factors, prevention, awareness and education, please visit the
American Diabetes Association website at www.diabetes.org.