Local Impact - Oklahoma

Glendine Blanchard, Absentee Shawnee Tribe

Absentee Shawnee Tribe Healthy Heart Program

"I want everyone to know that you don’t have to wait until you have a stroke to take advantage of all the Healthy Heart Program has to offer. Get started early and learn how to manage your diabetes!"
- Glendine Blanchard

I lost my mother to complications from diabetes in 2007 and the very same year I was also diagnosed with diabetes. I learned about the tribal Healthy Heart Program after I had a stroke in 2008 and it really opened my eyes. I found out that my stroke put me at greater risk for having another stroke and that I could participate in the Healthy Heart Program on a monthly basis to help me prevent it from happening again.

The program has given me the opportunity to get more involved in managing my diabetes and taught me the skills I need to take better care of myself and my family. With the support of the program staff and diabetes education classes, I have made changes in the foods I eat and I’m much more physically active than I used to be.

Last year the Healthy Heart program added diabetes education classes and a fitness program near my work, which really took away my excuses not to focus on my health. I also have 3 daughters, one son and 12 grandchildren and the lifestyle changes I’ve made as a result of what I’ve learned are having a positive impact on their health as well.

I’m really thankful for the Healthy Heart Program because it helps keeps me focused on managing my diabetes and helps me to maintain a normal life.

Diabetes in Oklahoma

According to 2008 CDC data, approximately 276,000 people in Oklahoma – 9.6% of the state’s population – had diagnosed diabetes, and many of them suffer from serious complications or conditions. In addition to the human toll diabetes places on people in Oklahoma, the financial burden diabetes places on the health system in the state is staggering – in 2007, the direct and indirect cost of diabetes in Oklahoma was approximately $1.87 billion.

Stories & Progams

Diabetes Program Participants
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