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The 5 Rs for all patients with diabetes

What does this mean?

Resource refers to finding, and collaborating with other health-care providers who also work to care for your patients with diabetes. Health-care providers who can be a part of an inter-professional diabetes team are primary care providers, diabetes educators, nurses, pharmacists, dietitians, and other specialists.

Why should I bother?

Because it improves your patient’s outcomes.

  • Evidence continues to document the importance of interprofessional teams to best support people with diabetes. Members of these teams need to have specific training in diabetes and work within the primary care setting. Additionally, teams should work collaboratively with the primary care provider who, in turn, should be supported by a diabetes specialist.

OK. You’ve sold me. Where do I start?

  1. With your patient at the centre, encourage them to expand and engage his/her diabetes team. The team may include: 
  2. Review these tools with your patients, and discuss which ones may help them build their team, track their goals plus document questions, answers and information
  3. Delegate responsibility
    1. As long as it’s within other health-care team members’ scope of practice, let them do more, such as adjusting insulin, monitoring and educating about blood glucose monitoring, and assessing for depression and coping strategies.
  4. Expand the roles of your colleagues within the health-care team
  5. Learn about, and leverage the capabilities of your team:
    1. Do you have access to a Diabetes Education Program?
    2. Do you have a nurse in your clinic?
    3. Do you have a community pharmacist with a particular interest in diabetes?
    4. Ask them what they can do to help your patients, and give way to let them help.