A new three-year grant of $863,000 to the N.C. Center for Health & Wellness (NCCHW) at UNC Asheville will help build North Carolina’s capacity for community-based programs to address diabetes.
The grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Administration for Community Living (ACL), on May 1.
“Self-management education and support is vital help for people with chronic conditions like diabetes, and through this grant, we will help Area Agencies on Aging all over North Carolina become accredited providers of these programs, and gain reimbursement so the programs can continue and grow,” said Amy Joy Lanou, NCCHW executive director, professor and chair of UNC Asheville’s Health and Wellness Department. “Evidence shows that self-management education and support brings better health outcomes and reduces health care expenses and we hope to extend those benefits to people in rural and underserved areas across the state.”
Partnering with the Piedmont Triad Regional Council Area Agency on Aging (PTRC AAA), NCCHW will work with the AAAs serving 37 eastern NC counties during the first year of the grant, to help them gain Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support accreditation through the American Association of Diabetes Educators. NCCHW and PTRC AAA will then assist the AAAs with Medicare billing, which will help sustain the diabetes education and support, as well as medical nutrition therapy programs for older adults with diabetes. The work will be extended into 11 western counties in the grant’s second year.
In the past two years, NCCHW also has received a major grant from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to support arthritis programs, and from ACL for falls prevention programs, as NCCHW continues in its role as a key figure in community health for older North Carolina residents, with more information at healthyagingnc.com.
NCCHW was launched at UNC Asheville in 2010, and works statewide to impact policy, build capacity and create health initiatives through a web of community partners all over North Carolina providing wellness programs and education. With a staff of seven and offices in Asheville and Raleigh, NCCHW continues to add to its list of partners and reach more people across the state with wellness education and programs. For more information, visit ncchw.unca.edu.