July 31, 2023

Family Health Services Pilot Diabetes Education Program Receives $5,000 Select Health Grant

JEROME, IDAHO — Family Health Services (FHS) has received a $5,000 grant from Select Health that will support the piloting of a Diabetes Self-Management and Education Support (DSMES) program. This program was designed by Megan Williams at the Shoshone Family Medical Center, which transitioned into an FHS clinic in 2022. Williams brings her experience to FHS as a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Licensed Dietitian, and Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist.

In 2022, FHS treated 2,930 patients with diabetes. From January to July of 2023, FHS has treated 2,767 patients. Anticipating the number of patients diagnosed with diabetes to increase within one year, FHS has recognized the need for an education program that focuses on diabetes self-management practices. Benefits of this program include lower A1C levels, less hospital admissions or readmissions, fewer ER visits, reduced stress, and improved self-care behaviors that often improve a patient’s lifelong management of the disease.

“This is a pilot program, but it provides in-depth education about the diabetes disease process in an easy to understand method, in patients’ appropriate language,” said Williams. “Every patient with diabetes can benefit from evidence-based education about the disease as well as current treatments to improve and maintain the quality of their life,” said Dr. Davis.

“FHS hopes to expand the program to the organization’s largest clinic at 388 Martin St. in Twin Falls and hire two new DSMES-trained staff members. FHS will eventually offer DSMES to patients with diabetes at all medical sites,” said CEO Aaron Houston.

The FHS award is among 10 grants presented statewide by Select Health, a non-profit organization that provides health insurance to more than 1 million members in Idaho, Utah and Nevada. Select Health is a division of Intermountain Health.

The Select Health Awards support non-profits and other organizations that provide services for improving health in Idaho. The $5,000 grants are intended to address three focus areas:

· Improve mental well-being
· Improve chronic & avoidable health outcomes
· Address and invest in social determinants of health.

Social determinants of health create barriers for people, including food, housing, transportation, literacy, and safety. These factors impact life expectancy more than medical care and magnify health disparities in marginalized communities.

Applications for the 2024 Select Health Idaho awards will be accepted starting in January. To learn more, see selecthealth.org/awards.

For more information about FHS, including employment opportunities, please visit fhsid.org.