October 2005 MedBytes: Diabetes on the Web

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While type 2 diabetes historically has been a disease largely of the middle-aged population, its reach is now extending to Texas youth. During 1997 through 2002, the incidence of diabetes increased 40 percent among people aged 18 to 44 years. As reported in this month's Public Health section, state law puts new requirements for caring with children with diabetes on Texas school districts and physicians. A  synopsis of the law  is posted on TMA's Web site.

The Internet has many other resources on diabetes, its complications, treatment, and prevention. Here are just a few of them.

Texas Diabetes Council
Established in 1983, the Texas Diabetes Council has worked with private and public health organizations to promote diabetes prevention and awareness throughout the state. The council's programs and activities are made possible by state and federal funding and partnerships with other organizations that share the council's vision of a Texas free of diabetes and its complications. The Texas Department of State Health Services administers grant-funded initiatives and contracted services, while council members serve on numerous committees and work groups addressing current issues affecting people with diabetes and those at risk. Physicians who are interested in finding out more about the council can visit its site at  www.texasdiabetescouncil.org. The site also links to Texas diabetes data, programs, the council's state plan for 2006-07, The Changing Face of Diabetes , and free diabetes education materials for patients and professionals. Visitors can also read Texas Diabetes , the council's newsletter.

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation
Since its founding in 1970, the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's (JDRF's) mission has been to find a cure for diabetes and its complications. More than 80 percent of JDRF's expenditures directly support research and research-related education. The foundation's site,  www.jdrf.org, offers information about research efforts, funding, and how to become involved in the new billion-dollar global campaign, "From Research to Reality: The Campaign to Accelerate the Cure for Diabetes." There are also links to JDRF's Walk to Cure Diabetes and links to publications about the disease. This includes COUNTDOWN , the award-winning magazine published quarterly by JDRF that focuses on research and its potential to help people with diabetes. It also provides articles on the effects of research on the way people with diabetes must live their lives.

National Diabetes Education Program
The National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP) is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' National Institutes of Health and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It includes more than 200 partners at the federal, state, and local levels, working together to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with diabetes. NDEP's online site,  www.ndep.nih.gov, has detailed information about the program; resources for health, education, and business professionals; and access to NDEP News & Notes , the program's monthly e-newsletter. The site also includes NDEP's publications catalog, which includes publications in Spanish.

American Diabetes Association
The American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation's leading nonprofit health organization providing diabetes research, information, and advocacy. Founded in 1940, ADA conducts programs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, reaching hundreds of communities. Its site,  www.diabetes.org, has information on the disease, diabetic nutritional needs (including how to read food labels), prevention, and various resources for professionals. The site also provides access to ADA's online journals and a list of clinical practice recommendations. There is also a link to DOCNEWS, ADA's online resource that provides practical insight on preventing and treating diabetes, obesity, and cardiovascular disease. Visitors can sign up for DOCNEWS e-mail alerts that share the table of contents for every issue.

MedBytes is a quick look at new, or newly discovered, Web sites of interest toTexas physicians. The column also highlights features of the TMA Web site. Publication of information about Web sites in this column is not to be considered an endorsement or approval by theTexas Medical Association of the sites or sponsors, or of any products or services involved.  

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