American Diabetes Association Alert Day

March 11, 2011


n Once again, we’re doing our part to stop diabetes! As we did last year, BHI is participating in the American Diabetes Association Alert Day℠—a one-day, “wake-up” call asking the American public to take the Diabetes Risk Test to find out if they are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. This year, Diabetes Alert Day is on March 22 and kicks off the "Join the Million Challenge"—a month-long effort to rally one million people to take the Diabetes Risk Test by April 22.

Hearing loss is about twice as common in adults with diabetes compared to those who do not have the disease, according to a study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Yet hearing screenings typically are not part of the regular regimen of care that people with diabetes are routinely recommended to receive. Nor do the vast majority of doctors in today’s health care system include hearing health as a routine part of annual exams, leaving people with diabetes all the more vulnerable to the negative impact that unaddressed hearing loss has on an individual’s life.

BHI is urging hearing health professionals across the country to “Join the Million Challenge.” By encouraging hearing health patients to take the Diabetes Risk Test, the hearing health community can help save lives. The Diabetes Risk Test, by the American Diabetes Association (ADA), helps individuals find out if they are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes. It asks users to answer simple questions about weight, age, family history and other potential risks for prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. It then shows users whether they are at low, moderate or high risk for type 2 diabetes. If an individual is at high risk, he or she is encouraged to talk with their health care provider.

Diabetes is a serious disease that threatens the lives of far too many Americans. While diabetes already strikes roughly 25.8 million children and adults in the United States—8.3% of the population—an additional 79 million people have pre-diabetes and are at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes, according to the National Diabetes Fact Sheet, 2011.

BHI believes strongly that it is important that the hearing healthcare community become increasingly involved in diabetes outreach efforts. Until the day that we can stop diabetes altogether, let’s do what we can to make a meaningful difference in the lives of people with this disease by educating them on how they can identify and address diabetes-related hearing loss and take action to better preserve both their health and quality of life.

There are several ways you can participate in American Diabetes Alert Day. Here are just some ideas:

  • Issue a customized press release and share our BHI diabetes and hearing loss backgrounder facts
  • Include a BHI article on diabetes and hearing health in your newsletter, on your web site, or as a handout in your office—or send it to your local newspaper for publication.  
  • Organize a hearing screening in your community on March 22, Diabetes Alert Day, encouraging visitors to take the Diabetes Risk Test as well as to get their hearing tested.
  • Host a health fair and team up with other healthcare professionals.
  • Host a walk or run in your community.
  • Disseminate Diabetes Alert Day and hearing health information, including English and Spanish versions of the Diabetes Risk Test and the Diabetes Alert Day Backgrounder.
  • Send out messages on Facebook and Twitter that share the Diabetes Risk Test and information on the link between diabetes and hearing loss.
  • Send information through listservs.
  • Hang posters in prominent locations such as your office, library, local mall, or church.
  • Include a Diabetes Alert Day banner on your web site.
  • Include an article on Diabetes Alert Day in your newsletter, on your web site, or as a handout in your office.
To download materials on American Diabetes Association Alert Day, visit http://www.diabetes.org/community-events/programs/alert-day/

To download BHI press information on the American Diabetes Association Alert day, visit http://old.betterhearing.org/professionals/tools.cfm (Under 2011 ADA Stop Diabetes Campaign)