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St. Luke’s Pediatric Diabetes Fun Fair
August 07, 2019

Education and awareness for kids and families living with type 1 diabetes.

St. Luke’s understands that having a child with a complex health issue like type 1 diabetes can be scary. That’s why the pediatric staff is always looking for ways to not only support its patients and their families, but to educate them about what it takes to stay healthy.

This year, St. Luke’s has created the St. Luke’s Pediatric Diabetes Fun Fair, an event designed to make education and awareness fun for kids impacted by type 1 diabetes.

When: Saturday, August 10th from 9am – 3 pm

Where: Jewish Community Center Campsite in Center Valley.

Multiple events are scheduled throughout the day to help parents and kids better manage their diabetes. Lecture topics cover issues like mental health, nutrition and sports. Participants will learn more about the effects of food choices and exercise on their blood sugars. Attendees can hear some great speakers in a casual setting, meet other kids in the community who also have type 1 diabetes, play games, swim, ride ponies, sample free diabetic-friendly food and win prizes.

The St. Luke’s team includes medical providers, dieticians, and diabetes nurse educators available to ensure each family always receives personalized care, but having a child diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (which is different than type 2 diabetes) is still a frightening, life-changing event. In this disease, (which typically occurs between the ages of 2 and 20) the body stops making a hormone called insulin, which is necessary to live. In order to stay healthy, kids and adults with type 1 diabetes need to inject insulin multiple times per day, every day, forever. They also need to monitor blood sugars multiple times per day, and make sure to keep them in a safe range.

“People with type 1 diabetes eat normal food, but they need insulin injections every single time they eat, which is exhausting and frustrating. And there are unique challenges in every age group - imagine having to inject insulin into your toddler every time he wanted a snack, or imagine being a teenager taking the SATs and having her blood sugar fall into critical range during the test,” says St. Luke’s pediatric endocrinologist, Pamela Abrams, MD. “Here at St. Luke's, we help our patients and their families with all aspects of diabetes care, from the basics of how to inject insulin to the more challenging emotional and insurance issues that come with this diagnosis. This event is a way to blend education, social support and fun. We hope everyone has a good time, and as always, we strive to make our families' burdens a little lighter."

The local Lehigh Valley Chapter of Bikers Against Bullies helped support St. Luke’s Pediatrics by donating proceeds from their “Caring for Kids” charity motorcycle ride. “Supporting this fun, educational event is in line with our organization’s mission to help children’s causes by promoting acceptance and respect for everyone despite our differences,” says Gino Russo, Pennsylvania liaison for Bikers Against Bullies. The Lehigh Valley Chapter of Bikers Against Bullies holds a fundraiser each year to support a local cause and this year, they raised over $8000 to support St. Luke’s Pediatrics services.  

To see a full schedule of events and to sign up for lectures and activities, please RSVP to St. Luke’s InfoLink at 1-866-STLUKES (785-8537) option 4, Info.Link@sluhn.org or visit the event calendar at sluhn.org.

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Founded in 1872, St. Luke’s University Health Network (SLUHN) is a fully integrated, regional, non-profit network of more than 15,000 employees providing services at 10 hospitals and 300 outpatient sites.  With annual net revenue greater than $2 billion, the Network’s service area includes 11 counties: Lehigh, Northampton, Berks, Bucks, Carbon, Montgomery, Monroe, Schuylkill and Luzerne counties in Pennsylvania and Warren and Hunterdon counties in New Jersey.  Dedicated to advancing medical education, St. Luke’s is the preeminent teaching hospital in central-eastern Pennsylvania.  In partnership with Temple University, St. Luke’s created the Lehigh Valley’s first and only regional medical school campus.  It also operates the nation’s longest continuously operating School of Nursing, established in 1884, and 34 fully accredited graduate medical educational programs with 263 residents and fellows.  St. Luke’s is the only Lehigh Valley-based health care system with Medicare’s five- and four-star ratings (the highest) for quality, efficiency and patient satisfaction.  St. Luke’s is both a Leapfrog Group and Healthgrades Top Hospital and a Newsweek World’s Best Hospital.  In 2019, three of IBM Watson Health’s 100 Top Hospitals were St. Luke’s hospitals.  St. Luke’s University Hospital has earned the 100 Top Major Teaching Hospital designation from IBM Watson Health seven times total and five years in a row. St. Luke’s has also been cited by IBM Watson Health as a 50 Top Cardiovascular Program.  Utilizing the Epic electronic medical record (EMR) system for both inpatient and outpatient services, the Network is a multi-year recipient of the Most Wired award recognizing the breadth of the SLUHN’s information technology applications such as telehealth, online scheduling and online pricing information.  St. Luke’s is also recognized as one of the state’s lowest cost providers.