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UMass Memorial Diabetic Health Clinic for the Underserved Community

The 7th UMass Diabetic Foot Screening & Health Clinic for the underserved population was held at the Saint Francis Xavier Center in Worcester’s canal district. UMass Memorial Diabetes Center of Excellence (DCOE) care team members joined Vascular Surgery, Podiatry, and other providers and students from UMass Chan Medical School & UMass Memorial Health, who volunteered to provide foot care, check vitals, offer point-of-care lab testing, wound care & more. Each participant received a pair of sneakers & socks donated by Sneakerama.  

The inaugural multidisciplinary outreach clinic was held on World Diabetes Day, November 14, 2020 at the Saint Francis Xavier Center.  The bi-annual event has since been held at several locations.  Organizer Tammy Nguyen, MD, PhD, combined her interests in vascular surgery, diabetic wound healing and homeless medicine to provide necessary health resources to this underserved population. 

"Our goal in starting these was to bring accessible healthcare to homeless and underserved individuals with regular outreach clinics to prevent diabetic foot ulcers and other complications from diabetes,” said Dr. Nguyen, a vascular surgeon-scientist who is conducting research about why people with diabetes experience problems with wound healing.

UMass Memorial DCOE endocrinologists, nurse practitioners, certified diabetes care & education specialists (CDCES) and registered dietitians provide examinations, distribute information and schedule follow-up appointments as necessary.   

“I’ve met with dozens of people at these clinics who have diabetes and many of them told me about family and friends who also struggle with it,” said Victoria Andersen, a clinical nutritionist & diabetes educator. “They were interested in knowing what their blood sugars were and learning how to manage them. It's rewarding to empower people with diet and lifestyle education so they can live their best lives.”

Past clinics were held at the Worcester YMCA, Veteran's Inc., Aids Project Worcester and the Athol Area YMCA. They continue to grow, both in terms of the number of attendees and services provided.  

"These events allow me to show and explain to people how they can make choices in accordance with their health goals," said Andersen. "We provide information about lifestyle modifications they can make to reduce their risk of developing serious complications caused by diabetes."

Photo Gallery from Past Community Diabetes Outreach Clinics

Endocrinologist Dr. Asem Ali & his son (right), DCOE nutritionist Victoria Andersen and ADA New England Director Rachel Myers greeting one of the participants at the YMCA clinic July 2023
Athol Area YMCA in Northern Worcester County - July 2023
Left: Organizer Dr. Tammy Nguyen with UMass Chan DCOE co-director Dr. David Harlan
Left to Right: Nutritionist & Diabetes Educator Victoria Andersen and Endocrinologist Dr. Leslie Domalik 





World Diabetes Day: November 14, 2020

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