Eli Lilly teams up with the Miranda Leavitt Center as they Host a North Country Forum on Diabetes

Diabetes forum geared to raise awareness and education for community members in the north country of NH and western Maine. Diabetes is the country's modern day epidemic, and is one of the largest health concerns in the country.

Online PR News – 26-January-2014 – Conway, NH – Memorial Hospital Diabetes Center in North Conway, NH invites public to February 20th event at Red Jacket
CONWAY NH – Three perspectives: a parent, a patient, a provider. Two distinct diseases: Type I and Type II diabetes. All come together for an educational and informative evening sponsored by the Miranda Center for Diabetes and Endocrinology on Thursday, Feb. 20, at 5:30 pm, at the Red Jacket Resort & Conference Center. The program is free and open to the public, and will include a panel presentation, audience Q&A, light refreshments, and Meet-and-Greet time with the Diabetes Center staff and the Leavitt family. The Eli Lilly “Journey Awards” also will be presented, recognizing people who have successfully managed diabetes with insulin for 25 and 50 years.
Certified nurse practitioner and diabetes educator Loretta Grimm, APRN, is moderator of the panel discussion which includes three unique perspectives on diabetes. Moira McCarthy is the mother of 21-year-old Lauren Stanford who was diagnosed at age 6 with Type I Diabetes. Dick Smith has been living successfully with Type II Diabetes for 18 years and, at age 72, is still working as a motivational speaker in the diabetes management field. Irwin Brodsky, MD, MPH, is the medical director at Maine Medical Partners Endocrinology and Diabetes Center, as well as a researcher and clinical professor.
“Today, nearly everyone has a friend, loved one, spouse, neighbor or co-worker with diabetes,” Grimm said in explaining the forum’s purpose. “We want to present different views of what it’s like to live with Type I and Type II diabetes, as well as hear from a recognized medical expert on current work being done in the field. The Miranda Center for Diabetes is here to help people and their families, and we want them to know who we are,” she added.
Panelist Moira McCarthy is a best-selling author and advocate with the New England Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) for more than 15 years. She is a former national reporter and newspaper editor, and author of the recently released book, “Raising Teens With Diabetes: A Parent Survival Guide.” Her tireless support of Type I diabetes research has landed her a spot as guest speaker on CNN Live and many other media outlets. She is also the creator of a well known blog about the subject, www.despitediabetes.com.
“My message to other parents of children with Type I diabetes is that it’s really about finding a balance between keeping them safe and healthy, and letting them live a full and happy life,” McCarthy said. “It impacts the family as well as the child at every age.”
Brenda Leavitt, whose daughter Miranda died at age 21 from complications of Type I diabetes, understands the challenge of parenting a child with diabetes. “One of our goals in establishing the Miranda Center at Memorial Hospital is to help educate the community,” she said. “Our daughter needed a great deal of support from her family, teachers, employers and friends in order to manage her disease on a daily basis. Type I is a totally different disease than Type II, and we want people to learn about both of them.”
Irwin Brodsky is the medical director for diabetes at Maine Medical Partners Endocrinology and Diabetes Center, as well as a research scientist associate clinical professor of medicine at Tufts University. He divides his professional time between clinical patient care and administration of inpatient, outpatient, and community diabetes activities for Maine Medical Partners.
Dr. Brodsky is a strong proponent of the need for education both to prevent Type II diabetes and to improve self-care for those with the disease. He is currently involved in the development of a statewide education campaign that could be used to motivate patients who have lapsed in their attention to the disease. He also serves as principal investigator of a National Institutes of Health research trial into the relationship between vitamin D and prevention of diabetes.
“There is a genetic component to the onset of Type II diabetes that involves defects in insulin production,” he said. “People who have one parent with it are at very high risk. For them, exercise and dietary intake are critically important.”
Dick Smith has spent more than 40 years in the health education field, but he was surprised to learn 18 years ago that he, too, had developed Type II diabetes. Since then, he has been a motivational speaker with the Granite State Diabetes Educator as well as the director of community development for Neighborhood Diabetes in New Hampshire, Maine and Vermont. At age 72, the Navy veteran is still working full-time and says he loves it.
The evening will include presentation of the Lilly Diabetes Journey Awards to individual patients of the Miranda Center who have successfully managed their diabetes over a long period of time. The program recognizes the constant effort necessary to manage the disease and serves as a means to inspire all people with diabetes to believe that they can do it, too.
The Diabetes Forum is free and open to the public with no reservations required. For more information, visit the event listing on the hospital’s website,www.memorialhospitalnh.org/diabetesevent or call Kathy Bennett, Public Relations and Marketing, (603) 356-5461, X2198.