Preventing diabetes in southern Illinois - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Preventing diabetes in southern Illinois

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FRANKLIN CO. -- Diabetes doesn't discriminate on the basis of age, gender or race.

More than 400 million people worldwide live with the disease, according to the World Health Organization. 

That includes thousands of people in Southern Illinois. 

Judy Courter, laboratory manager at Franklin Hospital, said about 11.6 percent of the people living in Franklin Co. have diabetes. 

That's over 3,000 people.

"I actually think that number is low because a lot of people are not diagnosed," Courter said. "They're either afraid to go to the doctor or they don't have good health care, or they don't want to miss work."

Courter recommends blood testing for glucose levels and kidney function, annually. She strongly encourages preventative healthcare. 

She says thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Illinois Critical Access Hospital Network, the hospital plans to provide free testing and educational help in September. She hopes it makes a difference.

"I'm from here and it's one of the main things I want to do for my community in making them healthier," said Courter. 

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