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February Partner Spotlight

VSP Vision Care Adapts NDEP Resources to Meet the Needs of Eye Care Professionals, Patients, and the Community


VSP Vision Care LogoWith a doctor network of approximately 28,000 eye care professionals and 56 million members, VSP Vision Care (VSP) is in a position to make a significant and far reaching impact on a large number of Americans. As a not for profit company, VSP is committed to giving back to the community and believes in improving health and quality of life of millions of people. Making a positive impact on the diabetes epidemic is a top company priority.

Projects and Promotions

The VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign was designed to increase consumer awareness around the importance of comprehensive eye care in detecting and managing diabetes as well as support VSP network doctors with continuing education in providing this essential care.VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign - Photo #1 The campaign was launched in 2010 and has reached eight states throughout the country.

In partnership with the VSP Mobile Eyes Program, the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP), State Optometric Associations, and local VSP network doctors, nearly 2,900 low-income, uninsured and underinsured people had access to free comprehensive eye exams, eyewear, and diabetes screenings. Of those, nearly 200 people were referred to their primary care physician for additional treatment. VSP also offers optometrists COPE-approved continuing education with two nationally recognized speakers who cover the PPOD disciplines along with other diabetes care guidelines.

VSP printed 4,200 copies of NDEP’s 4 Steps to Control Your Diabetes. For Life. booklet in English and Spanish to distribute at events in Lansing, Michigan; Atlanta, Georgia; and Los Angeles, California. The 4 Steps booklet is also available on the VSP website for doctors to print and give to patients and the organization will be making it available to members and benefit managers in the near future.

VSP Eye on Diabetes campaign - Photo #2Additionally, VSP worked closely with NDEP to develop a single page patient educational flyer that includes an authorization for services for our members who have previously been identified as having diabetes, diabetic retinopathy, hypertension, or high cholesterol. Developed as an easy-to-use, ready-to-print handout, the flyer is a simple way for doctors to provide patients information about their disease and how to get additional materials and resources through NDEP.

In partnership with NDEP, a positive impact has been made on the diabetes epidemic through outreach programs, education, and marketing tools.

To learn more, contact Jessica Hein, Outreach Coordinator, at

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Tags: Partners

New Fotonovela for Hispanic/Latina Women at Risk for Diabetes

New Fotonovela for Hispanic/Latina Women at Risk for Diabetes

 NDEP’s new publication, Fotonovela: Do it for them! But also for yourself, helps Hispanic/Latina women at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes and their families. The visually attractive and engaging story – told in both English and Spanish – uses role models to demonstrate how women can reduce their risk of developing type 2 diabetes through increased physical activity, making healthy food choices, and weight loss. This format is especially effective for people with low literacy. You can use this fotonovela to:

  • Encourage healthy behaviors.
  • Teach steps toward positive choices.
  • Support face-to-face education by lay-health workers.
  • Reinforce clinical recommendations.
  • Initiate discussion among a group or at meetings.
  • Encourage self-identification of risk factors.
  • Raise awareness.
  • Support community education outreach.

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NDEP Welcomes New Leadership

The NDEP is honored to welcome John Buse, M.D., Ph.D., as the Program’s new chair, and Wanda Montalvo, R.N., M.S.N., A.N.P., who will serve as NDEP’s new Operations Committee chair. Dr. Buse and Ms. Montalvo will serve in these roles for two-year terms.

Dr. Buse’s leadership role with the NDEP builds on notable accomplishments spanning more than 25 years. Currently a medical professor at UNC-Chapel Hill, he serves as the director of the Diabetes Care Center, chief of the Division of Endocrinology and executive associate dean for clinical research, and works within the leadership of the North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences Institute, home of the UNC NIH Clinical and Translational Science Awards. He has played key roles in numerous multicenter clinical trials, including two major NIH-sponsored trials: ACCORD (Action to Control Cardiovascular Risk in Diabetes), for which he serves as study vice-chair, and STOPP-T2D (Studies to Treat Or Prevent Pediatric Type 2 Diabetes). Buse served as 2008 president, medicine and science, of the American Diabetes Association (ADA), for which he has also chaired many committees and task forces.

Ms. Montalvo is an executive nurse leader with expertise in quality improvement, project implementation, strategic planning, community health collaboration, as well as health policy. Ms. Montalvo has been an active and engaged partner in NDEP activities for many years. Most recently she was the Clinical Director for the New York State Diabetes Campaign sponsored by NYSHealth Foundation where she expanded clinical and community partnerships, leveraged resources to support statewide diabetes training for clinicians and community members using NDEP’s Road to Health Toolkit, and implemented strategies to increase the number of clinicians with NCQA/BTE Diabetes Provider Recognition. Prior to joining NYSHealth, she was the Chief Clinical Program Officer at the Community Health Care Association of New York State. She is a recipient of the Healthy Youth for a Health Future Champion Award from the U.S. Surgeon General, the Quality Center of the Bureau of Primary Health Care Outstanding Achievement Award, and a RWJF Executive Nurse Fellow 2004–2007 as well as a National Advisory Committee member for Partners Investing in Nursing.

Dr. Buse and Ms. Montalvo succeed Martha (Marti) Funnell, M.S., R.N., and Jeffrey Caballero, M.P.H. — whose leadership and dedication has moved NDEP forward to advance its mission and strengthen partner engagement with the NDEP. The NDEP is extremely grateful to Ms. Funnell and Mr. Caballero for their years of support and look forward to their continued involvement with the NDEP in the years to come!

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January Partner Spotlight

Nevada Diabetes Prevention and Control Program (NDPCP) Uses NDEP’s Road to Health Toolkit to Improve Self-care for Latino/Hispanic Communities


When the Nevada State Health Division’s Diabetes Prevention and Control Program (NDPCP) set out to decrease the burden of diabetes in the Latino/Hispanic communities in the state’s southern region, the program focused on strategies to reduce the onset of diabetes and ways to improve self-care. In response to Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) data, which showed that the Latino population had the region’s lowest rates of self-care, NDPCP began to develop a program to provide free diabetes self-management education classes for Spanish-speaking residents who had diabetes, were at high risk for developing diabetes, or cared for someone with diabetes. Encouraging peer-to-peer education and inspiring behavior change in the community were key goals.

Outreach and PromotionsGroup of people line dancing

NDPCP examined a range of evidence-based tools and chose the U.S. Diabetes Conversation Map® program sponsored by Merck to begin building a program that teaches self-management skills to patient groups. However, the Conversation Map program only featured four sessions and focused primarily on the emotional aspects of diabetes control. The NDEP Road to Health Toolkit, available in English and Spanish, provided the perfect complement to the Conversation Map program. NDPCP incorporated components of the Road to Health Toolkit—including two 2-hour sessions on nutrition and physical activity—to create Road to a Healthier You, a comprehensive 6-week classroom-based prevention program for Spanish-speaking communities. NDPCP’s Road to a Healthier You program earned the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2011 Frankie Award for promotion of NDEP resources to address disparities.


Nearly 1 year into the project, Marjorie Franzen-Weiss, DPCP coordinator at the Nevada State Health Division, said, "The two programs are a natural fit…they complement each other very well."

Evaluation is being conducted at pre- and post-course and at 3- and 6-month intervals to determine changes in self-efficacy and health behavior. As of April 2011, preliminary findings indicated that:

  • The majority of class participants (91%) were willing and able to start making changes in their daily lives to better manage their diabetes health.
  • All of the participants who took both a pre- and post-test reported having set a goal or made a plan to start changing their daily lives to better manage their diabetes (health).

"This was our first year. We’re in the building phase, so we don’t have a lot of data yet." Franzen-Weiss added. "We are still trying to evaluate if the program is making a difference."

NDPCP praises the NDEP Road to Health Toolkit as "a wonderfully, culturally adapted piece" that has helped to magnify the reach and impact of the division’s limited budget. As the program has unfolded, the key lesson learned, according to Franzen-Weiss, is that "you don’t know what is going to work until you get started."

For more information about the Nevada State Health Division DPCP, contact Marjorie Franzen-Weiss, M.P.H., CHES, at

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NIDDK Director Encourages People to Talk about Health History at Family Gatherings

In an interview with NIH Radio, Dr. Griffin Rodgers, director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), stressed the importance of knowing family health history and noted that holiday gatherings are a great time to find out yours. Many diseases — including diabetes — run in families. If you have a mother, father, sister, or brother with type 2 diabetes, you are at risk for developing the disease. Dr. Rodgers also shared helpful ways to stay healthy despite all the stress and travel during the holiday season

During the interview, Dr. Rodgers provided the following advice:

  • Take advantage of holiday gatherings to find out your family health history.
  • Family history can’t be changed; but you can lower your risk for diabetes and other diseases by making a plan with your health care team to lose weight and be more active.
  • During the holidays, carve out time to eat healthy and be active.
  • At holiday events, focus on friends and family instead of the food.
  • Saving up for a big meal may actually cause more harm than good.
  • Watch your alcohol intake for hidden calories.

Listen to the interview

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