December 27, 2019 - Vizient Southern States recently presented the First
Place Top Performer Award to Southeast Georgia Health System during its
Diabetes Management Collaborative of the Year Celebration Meeting. The
first-place award was presented to the Health System’s
diabetes education and disease management team for their success with diabetes prevention
According to statistics compiled by Centers of Disease Control, 30.3 million
people or 9.4% of the US population has diabetes and the southern states
have the highest prevalence. Pre-diabetes is estimated at 33.9% of adults
18 years or older. Unfortunately, many people are not aware that they
have this disease. Many will first learn that they have diabetes when
they are treated for one of its life-threatening complications –
heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness, nerve disease and amputation.
Vizient Southern States is a membership alliance for not-for-profit health
care providers that exists to ensure its members deliver cost-effective
care by connecting them with the knowledge, solutions and expertise that
During the past year, ten Vizient Southern States’ members, including
the Health System’s disease management team, participated in the
Diabetes Management Collaborative. Members received valuable education
from leading practice experts, exchanged knowledge on current successes
and challenges in community outreach, diabetes prevention and education,
and learned how to best connect patients to appropriate care.
The top members that submitted data to track progress, consistently participated
in collaborative meetings and implemented one or more changes as a result
of being in the collaborative, received Top Performer awards, with Southeast
Georgia Health System receiving 1st place.
As a result of its participation in the collaborative, the Health System
was able to review existing diabetes prevention initiatives and add additional
elements to address and support a cross continuum of care which includes
screening, education and additional support, self-care and wellness, diagnosis
and initial education, acute management, transition of care, and self-management
The Health System provides the following initiatives in support of diabetes
Health Promotion and Wellness provides a Biometric Analysis and Health Risk Assessment to team members
and covered spouses every two years which include a health questionnaire,
height, weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and blood glucose screening.
Certified diabetes educators (CDE), Lisa Mason, MS, RDN, LD, CDE and Sue Ullrich, R.N., MA.Ed., CDE,
diabetes program coordinator, offer individual and group outpatient diabetes
classes. Additionally, the CDE’s developed a teaching tool for clinical
team support with instructional guidance to all inpatient diabetics to
support post-discharge care.
- Disease Management provides support to pre-diabetics and diabetics by offering
information, education, and referrals for CDE support.
- Michelle Atkinson, R.N., BSN, Disease Management, also partners with The
Coastal Regional Commission/Coastal Area Agency on Aging in co-facilitating
Chronic Disease Self-Management Workshops and Diabetes Self-Management
Programs, both originally developed at Stanford University, which are
offered in community and faith-based organizations.
- Information Technology and Quality Analyst Champions, Wayne Paul and Jerry
Roe developed reports and queries necessary for collection of data reported
to the collaborative.