Community Health Workers Urge People with Diabetes to Consider Vaccine
Thursday, May 6, 2021
WHITESBURG, Ky. -- People with Type 2 diabetes face an increased risk of severe illness if they become sick with the coronavirus, and in eastern Kentucky, community health workers urged people with the condition to consider getting their shots.
Earlier this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention moved to prioritize all Americans living with diabetes for COVID-19 vaccination.
Jeanie Wheeler, a retired nurse, volunteer firefighter and Johnson County resident, lives with type 2 diabetes, and while she stays healthy and manages her blood sugar, Wheeler said she didn't hesitate to get the vaccine.
"I had no issues with deciding that the vaccine was the way to go," Wheeler stated. "And for me, I was always for vaccinations for my children. My daughter is a front-line worker; she had her vaccine."
All Kentuckians age 16 and up are now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. For more about the vaccine, or how to find it near you, talk to your doctor, call your county health department, or go to vaccine.ky.gov.
Denesa Watts, licensed diabetes educator for the Kentucky River District Health Department, said anyone with hesitation around the vaccines should know their doctors, nurses and health professionals are getting vaccinated themselves.
"We really encourage people with diabetes to talk to their physicians and to consider having that COVID vaccine," Watts asserted. "We know that the risk of getting sick from COVID-19, it's likely to be lower, if their diabetes is well managed."
Wheeler added emergency responders have jumped at the chance to stay protected while coming into close contact with people in their communities.
"We have career firefighters as well as the volunteers, and they have all been more than willing to take the vaccine and protect themselves," Wheeler observed. "It's not like anyone is forcing you to do that. But it's just a personal decision that you have to make yourself."
Health professionals say thousands of volunteers with diabetes were part of the clinical trial for the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and the results found the vaccines to be safe and effective.
get more stories like this via email
Health and Wellness
ALBANY, N.Y. -- Advocates for people with disabilities in New York are pushing for the federal budget resolution to include $400 billion in Medicaid …
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Freshwater mussels are key to keeping the Chesapeake Bay watershed clean, and with more than half of all species now facing …
BUFFALO, Wyo. -- The doors of five historic community halls across Johnson and Sheridan counties were opened this past weekend for 15 people curious …
RALEIGH, N.C. -- Massive wildfires in the Western U.S. and Canada have triggered poor air quality in North Carolina over the past few weeks, and …
OLYMPIA, Wash. -- Farmworkers are in Olympia today, calling for stronger protections from extreme heat. The farmworkers union Familias Unidas por la …
BOISE, Idaho -- Rallies are taking place across the Northwest to support salmon, which face dire conditions in the Columbia River Basin. Saturday…
IXONIA, Wis. -- The public comment period has ended, but opponents of proposed natural gas storage facilities in southeastern Wisconsin still hope to …
HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Pennsylvanians are growing worried about the environmental consequences of natural-gas drilling in the state, according to a new …