ABC’s Of Diabetes Education: An Interprofessional Education Model
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BACKGROUND:Diabetes Mellitus affects over 30 million people in the United States and is the 7th leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a chronic disease that can harm multiple organ systems, including the skin, heart, eyes, nerves, and blood vessels. Due to the complex nature of Diabetes Mellitus, disease management is most effective when provided by a team of health professionals.A 2014 study by Shiyanbola et al evaluated the impact of an interprofessional diabetes education model in underserved patients in South Dakota using a modified version of the Alphabet Strategy, a mnemonic-based checklist of critical diabetes care components, which focuses on Advice, Blood Pressure, Cholesterol, Diabetes Control, Dental Care, Diet, Eye care, Foot Care, and Guardian Drugs. In this study, students from medicine, pharmacy, nursing, nutrition, and dental hygiene gave monthly education sessions, supervised by practitioners, on their assigned areas of expertise within the Alphabet Strategy to enrolled patients.Patient outcome results showed a statistically significant improvement in diabetes knowledge, weight, hemoglobin A1c, blood pressure, and HDL, comprising nine of the 15 areas evaluated. Additionally, there was a statistically significant increase in patients following an exercise program and engaging in specialized eye care, comprising two of the four health behavior changes evaluated.In this project, utilizing the Alphabet Strategy as the basis of an advanced, interprofessional simulation activity centered on diabetes education, it is anticipated that students will gain confidence in interprofessional collaboration and diabetes disease knowledge, ideally leading to improved self-efficacy in guiding diabetic patients to achieve improved disease control in clinical practice settings.