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Ralphs, Vons pharmacies provide diabetes guidance
May 22nd, 2013
LOS ANGELES – Ralphs and Vons pharmacies have partnered with UnitedHealthcare and the YMCA to help Los Angeles County employees and their families prevent and manage diabetes.
UnitedHealthcare said late Tuesday that Ralphs, a Kroger Co. supermarket chain, and Vons, a Safeway Inc. food and drug chain, are participating in the health insurer's Diabetes Control Program (DCP), designed to help people with diabetes better manage their disease and reduce the risk of developing related complications.
The program provides access to local pharmacists trained to help people with diabetes better control their condition and improve adherence to doctors' treatment plans. In-store pharmacists at select Ralphs and Vons location will perform blood glucose, cholesterol and blood pressure testing services for program participants and provide them with on-the-spot results, enabling them to get instant feedback on their progress.
Ralphs has 128 stores in Los Angeles County, and Vons has 276 stores in the region.
The DCP is part of UnitedHealth's Diabetes Prevention and Control Alliance (DPCA). Launched in 2010 through a partnership with UnitedHealth Group, YMCA of the USA and retail pharmacies, the clinically proven, community-based initiative aims to tackle the epidemic of type 2 diabetes and prediabetes.
DCPA's other component is the Diabetes Prevention Program, a coaching program conducted in a group setting through the Y to help people with prediabetes and those at high risk for type 2 diabetes to prevent or delay the onset of the disease through healthy eating, more physical activity and other lifestyle changes.
The programs will be offered at no additional cost to Los Angeles County employees and their family members enrolled in UnitedHealth plans. The insurer said this marks the first time in the area that a health plan is paying for evidence-based diabetes prevention and engaging pharmacists to support diabetes management programs.
UnitedHealth reported that last year the American Diabetes Association released a report citing that nearly 10% of adults in Los Angeles County have diabetes and that the disease is now the fifth-leading cause of death in the county. The study demonstrated increases in the disease among all income and ethnic groups, with slightly more cases among men than women.