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    Morehouse School of Medicine Continues to Work toward Elimination of Diabetes

    Trends discouraging but knowledge encouraging in combating nation’s 6th leading killer

    Contact: Cherie A. Richardson / 404-752-1917 /

    Here are the alarming facts:

    • Nearly 24 million children and adults in the United States live with diabetes
    • 57 million Americans are at risk for type 2 diabetes
    • 1 out of every 3 children born today will face a future with diabetes if current trends continue (Source: American Diabetes Association)

    Since November is American Diabetes Month, Morehouse School of Medicine is making its experts in this field available to talk about the problem, treatment, and advances in research related to this disease. Diabetes is characterized by persistent high blood sugar levels and can lead to potentially life-threatening complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness, and amputation.

    The burden of diabetes is much greater for minority populations. According to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), 10.8 percent of non-Hispanic blacks, 10.6 percent of Mexican Americans, and 9.0 percent of American Indians have diabetes. That compares to 6.2 percent of whites. Certain minorities also have much higher rates of diabetes-related complications and death, in some instances by as much as 50 percent more than the total population.

    One central mission at MSM is targeting medical issues that disproportionally effect minority populations. In fact, there is a center at the school devoted to doing exactly that. The Center of Excellence on Health Disparities at MSM was established in 2002 by a grant from the National Institutes of Health, National Center on Minority Health and Health Disparities, as one of 88 centers nationwide to build research capacity and mobilize community partners to address, and ultimately eliminate, health disparities through a multidisciplinary, community-based participatory approach. Diabetes is one area of research.

    MSM diabetes experts who are available for interviews include Oluranti Aladesanmi, M.D., M.P.H., Priscilla Igho-Pemu, MBBS, MSCR; Folashade Omole, M.D., James Reed, M.D., and Charles Sow, M.D.

    When issuing the formal proclamation about diabetes month for this year, President Barack Obama emphasized preventive care is the simplest way to avoid diabetes and its complications. "A healthy diet, combined with daily exercise, has been shown to dramatically reduce incidence of this disease." He added, "African Americans, Latinos, and Native Americans, as well as the elderly, are at greater risk of developing diabetes over their lifetimes. As a nation, we must ensure that all Americans know the warning signs of this disease, and if diagnosed, have access to affordable, quality medical care to help control it."

    At Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM) researchers and clinicians work to educate, prevent and eliminate diabetes.

    Please let me know if you would like to reach any of our experts to schedule an interview to discuss prevention, treatment or research.

    Morehouse School of Medicine (MSM), located in Atlanta, Georgia, was founded in 1975 as the Medical Education Program at Morehouse College. In 1981 Morehouse School of Medicine became an independently chartered institution and the first minority medical school established at a Historically Black College and University in the 20th century. MSM is among the nation's leading educators of primary care physicians. Our faculty and alumni are noted in their fields for excellence in teaching, research and public policy, and are known in the community for exceptional, culturally appropriate patient care. For more information about Morehouse School of Medicine, visit us online at