As a doctor who treats patients with diabetes, and as an individual living with diabetes, I know first hand that finding the right diabetes care team and system can be tough in this confusing, constantly changing, and fast paced health care system. Obviously, there is both good and bad diabetes care being delivered in our community. In fact, experts estimate that only about half of all people with diabetes receive the right medical care at the right time. It is also my opinion that good diabetes care depends to an even larger extent on the ability of the diabetic patient to self manage his/her own disease.
This is despite the fact that nationally accepted, science-based guidelines (recommended by the American Diabetes Association and American Academy of Clinical Endocrinologists) exist to help clarify what constitutes high-quality diabetes care. But recent research shows that too many people with diabetes in Greater Cincinnati are unaware of these guidelines.
The Health Improvement Collaborative’s Cincinnati Aligning Forces for Quality initiative is seeking to transform diabetes care in Greater Cincinnati. The Collaborative’s recently launched Diabetes Footprints Campaign (www.diabetesfootprints.org) provides care guidelines and resources to help people with diabetes improve the care they receive from their doctor and better manage their own health.
Michael Heile, MD