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San Antonio Area Foundation grant to fund diabetes, heart disease screening effort

A diabetes and heart disease community outreach project at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio received a $13,300 grant Tuesday night from the San Antonio Area Foundation.

The project, designed to serve the community and educate undergraduate students in the UTHSC School of Nursing, will provide cholesterol, blood pressure and blood glucose screenings at various clinics, community centers and nutrition sites throughout the city. One of the sites will be the Ella Austin Community Center.

“We will use the grant mostly to buy equipment to do the screenings,” said Cheryl Ross Staats, M.S.N., R.N., C.S., assistant professor in the department of acute nursing care. “This will give professional nursing students the chance to provide care in the community and across environments outside of the hospital setting. We certainly hope to identify people at risk for heart disease and diabetes, and to encourage referral to physicians and nurse practitioners for diagnostic evaluation.”

Another goal is to develop effective mechanisms for tracking health care follow-up and behavioral changes in at-risk individuals, Staats said.

According to the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District’s Health Profiles 1999, more than 2,500 deaths in Bexar County were attributed to heart disease and more than 1,000 deaths were attributed to diabetes and diabetes-related diseases.

The U. T. Health Science Center received 20 SAAF grants totaling $379,257 at the Tuesday awards ceremony.

Contact: Will Sansom