MANHASSET, N.Y.— The North Shore-LIJ Health System recently formed a Lions Club International chapter, the Manhasset North Shore-LIJ Lions, with the mission to provide resources and support for the prevention and treatment of diabetes in Long Island communities.
Approximately 26 million people in the United States have diabetes and one in four is unaware. Estimates range as high as 79 million who have pre-diabetes and are at a high risk for developing the disease. “Without prevention and treatment, the numbers will continue to rise,” said Tracy Breen, MD, director of diabetes care for North Shore-LIJ. “Many Americans live with undiagnosed diabetes and don’t even know it. Routine checkups and blood work are the best prevention methods, and access to that care is essential.”
“As a major healthcare provider, it is our responsibility to provide multidisciplinary diabetes care and prevention services to our communities,” said Susan Somerville, executive director of North Shore University Hospital. “Awareness is essential and our Lions Club’s charter is a another step to helping make each community aware of the diabetes services available. With the additional support of dedicated Lions members and volunteers, we have the ability to make a difference for thousands of at-risk New Yorkers.”
Research shows that patients with diabetes or pre-diabetes, who are not carefully managed, experience poorer outcomes such as blindness, kidney failure and damage to the heart and circulatory system. The health system’s diabetes task force combines the expertise of the departments of nursing, nutrition, medicine, surgery, pharmacy, social work, laboratory and quality management to reduce the incidence of diabetes and coordinate patient care. “The best way to treat diabetes is to prevent it,” said Marie Frazzitta, president of the Manhasset North Shore-LIJ Lions Club, co-chair of the health system’s diabetes task force, and Director of Diabetes Education for the health system. “Our new Lions Club is committed to helping provide the screening and educational resources and services to begin battling diabetes before it strikes, and to keep those diagnosed as healthy as possible.”
To help raise funds for diabetes screening, prevention and treatment, the Manhasset North Shore-LIJ Lions Club is holding its Charter Night at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, April 18, 2012 at North Shore University Hospital, 300 Community Drive, Manhasset, NY 11030. Come by to show your support, tickets are $40 per person for buffet dinner, dessert and light refreshments. All proceeds will go to support the cause.
To get involved with the Manhasset North Shore-LIJ Lions Club, contact Marie Frazzitta at (516) 474-3549. For more information about the diabetes, treatment and support groups visit www.northshorelij.com.