Free Diabetes Education Classes for Marion County Residents

In 2020, The Marion County Hospital District’s AMP Program created a Diabetes Consortium with the goal of addressing the need for increased access to free diabetes education in Marion County.


of Marion County's adult population lives with diabetes


are pre-diabetic


The county's death rate has averaged 50% higher than the rest of Florida

Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in Marion County as of 2021

The Diabetes Empowerment Education Program, also known as DEEP™, is an education curriculum designed to help people with pre-diabetes, diabetes, relatives and caregivers gain a better understanding of diabetes self-care. Classes last a total of eight weeks, providing participants with eight unique learning modules. These classes are offered throughout Marion County for free. The goals of the DEEP curriculum include:

• Improving and maintaining the quality of life of persons with pre-diabetes and existing diabetes

• Preventing complications and incapacities • Improving eating habits and maintaining adequate nutrition

• Increasing physical activity

• Developing self-care skills

• Improving the relationship between patients and health care providers

• Utilizing available resources

What is the Diabetes Consortium?

The Diabetes Consortium is comprised of the following partners Elder Options, Heart of Florida Health Care, AdventHealth, Department of Health, UF IFAS, and One Health Center. The Consortium partners with Elder Options to train facilitators to teach the Diabetes Empowerment Education Program (DEEP). The Diabetes Consortium meets regularly to ensure free diabetes educations are available in multiple parts of Marion County as well as to share services provided for pre-diabetes or to individuals with diabetes.

Are you at risk for Type 2 Diabetes?

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Please contact or call (352) 622-3662 for more information on DEEP classes near you or other services offered by the Marion County Hospital District!