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New position statement emphasizes patient-centered care in diabetes management

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Healthcare providers treating diabetes need to think beyond clinical numbers, such as focusing solely on an individual’s blood sugar goals. Taking patient experience into account improves the quality of care and helps achieve treatment goals, according to a new position statement presented at the Endocrine Society. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism.

This position statement reflects the consensus of two virtual roundtables held by the Endocrine Society in 2022. Participants included representatives from the American College of Cardiology, the American College of Physicians, and the American Diabetes Association.®the Association of Diabetes Care and Education Professionals, the Diabetes Technology Association, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the diabetes research organization dQ&A, and the patient advocacy groups DiabetesSisters, Close Concerns, and Taking Control of Your Diabetes.

More than 500 million people worldwide have diabetes. Diabetes occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot respond properly to insulin, resulting in high glucose (blood sugar) levels in the blood. Managing this chronic disease requires lifelong lifestyle changes, which can be burdensome for people living with diabetes and their caregivers. Daily tasks such as monitoring blood sugar levels, managing diet and exercise, scheduling regular preventive care, and administering medications must be supervised by the person living with diabetes.

Effective two-way communication between people with diabetes and their health care providers helps establish a shared understanding of treatment plans and goals. Healthcare providers who take the time to explain treatment options and discuss potential barriers can improve patient satisfaction and clinical outcomes. Additionally, health care providers should consider individual patients’ health literacy level and cultural background when discussing treatment options.

Many existing educational resources are available to help healthcare providers discuss diabetes care in a neutral and nonjudgmental manner and consider ways in which strategies can be put into practice. ” “It’s important to note that this is not the case,” said Rita R. Kalyani, MD, MHS, professor in the Division of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He chaired the position statement and represented the Endocrine Society at the consensus roundtable. ”However, the landscape of diabetes and its management is constantly changing, and both healthcare providers and patients with diabetes continue to need new and evolving tools to address the common challenges they face. ”

People with diabetes are at increased risk of developing depression, anxiety, and other mental illnesses. Therefore, it is important to understand the psychosocial effects of diabetes. Addressing stressors in the medical setting and ensuring timely mental health referrals when appropriate can help people with diabetes feel more comfortable and participate more fully in their visits and care.

Each section of the position statement begins with a common clinical scenario that illustrates important gaps in diabetes care. It also includes readily accessible graphics and tools that healthcare providers can use to deliver patient-centered care in practice.

This position statement provides a framework for leveraging the experience of people with diabetes to optimize health outcomes in several key areas, including:

  • Use of person-centered language in medical settings
  • Ensure that diabetes self-management and referral to support services programs are timely and accessible to all people with diabetes.
  • Effectively navigate available treatment options, explain complex prescription plans to diabetic patients, and encourage them to take their medications as prescribed.
  • To prevent treatment inertia, consider how to make timely adjustments to an individual’s treatment plan if they are not meeting treatment goals.
  • Strategies for assessing hypoglycemia (potentially dangerous hypoglycemic episodes), and prevention and treatment of hypoglycemia are discussed.
  • Improve cardiovascular and renal outcomes using new treatment options.
  • Use of telemedicine in appropriate clinical settings.
  • Use diabetes technology, such as insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitoring systems, as appropriate and incorporate them into your diabetes management plan.

Other authors of the study are Miriam Allende Vigo of the University of Puerto Rico in Humacao, Puerto Rico, and president of the American College of Physicians; Kelly Antinori-Lent of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Shadyside, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, president of the Association of Diabetes Care and Education Professionals (ADCES); Kelly L. Close of Close Concerns, Inc. in San Francisco, California. Sandeep R. Das, president of the American College of Cardiology, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, Texas; Phyllisa DeRose of dQ&A, a diabetes research company in San Francisco, California, and Stephen Edelman of the University of California, San Diego, San Diego, California, president of Diabetes Control (TCOYD). Nouja A. El-Sayed, American Diabetes Association, Arlington, Virginia, and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts; David Carr of the Diabetes Technology Association in Santa Barbara, California; Joshua J. Newmiller of the University of Spokane, Washington, president of the American Diabetes Association;Anna Norton on behalf of the Diabetic Sisters of Raleigh, North Carolina

This roundtable was supported by educational grants to the Endocrine Society from Abbott, Medtronic, Novo Nordisk, and Vertex. The position statement summarizes the results from these consensus roundtables and was independently prepared by the authors.

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Reference magazines:

Kalyani, R.R. other. (2024) Prioritizing the patient experience in the management of diabetes and its complications: Endocrine Society position statement. Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism. doi.org/10.1210/clinem/dgad745.

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