Better Health, Better Life: Preventive Care (Provider Edition)

Better Health, Better Life


Better Health, Better LifeMessage from the CEO

Service, Vision, Inspiration
Howard Lee, UHA Health Insurance

Diabetes is a growing epidemic with a heavy economic burden. It has cost the state an estimated $1.5 billion each year. Diabetes is a leading cause of other chronic diseases like kidney disease. About 154 thousand people in Hawaii are afflicted by diabetes, and another 442 thousand are affected by prediabetes but only one-third of them know it.  Without intervention, 15% to 30% of them will develop type 2 diabetes within 5 years.1 These are huge numbers that will contribute to increased overall health care costs over time if nothing is done. Other factors which increase the cost of health care, like the development of new drugs and medical devices, are out of our control. The good news is that diabetes is largely preventable and manageable and we can control the costs and outcomes associated with it through prevention and lifestyle changes. In fact, about 9 in 10 cases of type 2 diabetes can be avoided by addressing factors such as being at a healthy weight, increased physical activity, eating nutritiously and not smoking. 2

At UHA, we are committed to keeping our members healthy through prevention and wellness. We are proud to offer the YMCA's Diabetes Prevention Program free of charge to qualifying UHA Members who are at risk for prediabetes. Those with diabetes could also be at risk of contracting Chronic Kidney Disease. We encourage you to learn more about managing Chronic Kidney Disease through the free courses offered by Aloha Kidney.

Each of us has the most control over the choices we make on a daily basis, which nudge us toward or away from chronic disease. We encourage you to check out these programs and take control of your health and wellness today.


Howard Lee
UHA President & CEO

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 9/22/2016
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 9/22/2016
  3. Hu FB, MasonJE, Stampfer MJ, Coldotz G, Liu S, et al. 2001. “Diet , lifestyle and the risk of type 2 diabetes mellitus in women.” N Engl J Med, 245 (II): 790-7.

Read the Summer 2017 issue