Faith Family Medical Clinic is striving to affect change in Middle Tennessee with a “Journey to Health” lifestyle change program. The program targeted at Type 2 diabetics kicked off on January 18, 2011.
Jeff Wolfe, who boasts a Bachelors degree in Physical Education, along with personal training certification and experience as a YMCA branch CEO, heads the program.
A one-time grant of $181,000 was awarded to Faith Family by the Tennessee Department of Health. This funding was offered after the state’s request for a “proposal intended to reduce the prevalence and severity of Type 2 Diabetes and improve the quality of life for diabetics and those at risk.”
Faith Family’s program includes components such as free nutrition and fitness classes, reduced rate retinal exams, and memberships at the Baptist Wellness Center. So far, there have been eighty-one eye exams, thirty-nine classes, and forty-eight gym memberships awarded. The weekly classes are averaging fifty participants, with 120 patients signed up.
These numbers are an exciting surprise to Traci Warner, a Faith Family nurse practitioner. “Of course we were hopeful to have positive responses and to see patients come to classes, but years of working with patients has shown that personal obstacles can often stand in the way.”
Nan Allison, a nutrition consultant for the program shared, “It is truly wonderful to see what Faith Family is doing. People are really taking advantage of the program.”
Most encouraging has been the response from patients. One participant notes that she “was intimidated at first by the idea of drinking lots of water, but when Jeff broke it down to one bottle before lunch and another before dinner- it really took the scare out of it.” Another shares her excitement that the program is a “lifestyle change rather than a diet program,” and adds, “to be afforded this opportunity is a real gift and blessing.”
The program ultimately hopes to reduce the prevalence of diabetes by improving patient nutrition, education, and activity.
Faith Family also participates in the Meharry-Vanderbilt Alliance Diabetes Improvement Project aimed at improving care for diabetic patients in Middle Tennessee.