CVS Pharmacists Serve a Vital Role in Helping Patients Manage Diabetes

Monday, November 5, 2007

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Nov. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Nearly 21 million adults and children suffer from diabetes, and an estimated 6.2 million are unaware they have the disease, according to the American Diabetes Association (ADA). To help raise awareness, CVS/pharmacy will be educating and counseling diabetes patients on topics ranging from identifying symptoms and monitoring sugar levels to managing medications and avoiding medication interactions and potential side effects.

Diabetes is a condition in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin. Insulin is responsible for converting sugar and starches into energy. Diabetes is typically treated by insulin injections to help simulate natural insulin cycles. At any time, diabetes sufferers can be taking 5 or 6 medications to treat their condition and side effects of the therapy.

"Our pharmacists play an active role in helping patients manage medications for chronic diseases, such as diabetes, that can require constant monitoring," said Papatya Tankut, R.Ph., Vice President of Pharmacy Professional Services at CVS/pharmacy. "It's important that patients take the time to talk with their pharmacists, let them know about over the counter medicines and other prescriptions they are taking, or advise them on any side effects they may be experiencing. Pharmacists can provide counsel on medication compliance, side effects and potential interactions for patients who can in turn work toward a treatment plan with their doctor."

In partnership with the American Diabetes Association, CVS/pharmacy has produced diabetes informational materials available in pharmacies across the country, providing information on the disease such as symptoms, treatment, glucose meter testing and more.

In addition, through Diabetes Awareness Month, 1,500 select CVS/pharmacy stores throughout the country will offer support for patients with diabetes through Meter Day events, which will include:

    -- Blood glucose meter demonstrations
    -- Disease state management discussion and information
    -- Diabetes disease state educational literature
    -- Consumer care and diabetes care coupon book
    -- Free meter coupon

Contact your local CVS/pharmacy to find out more about events that will be hosted in your area.