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March 2016 Department Discovery: Diabetes Education

March 2016 Department Discovery: Diabetes Education

The March Department Discovery shines a light on the Campbell County Health Diabetes Education program.

CCH's Diabetes Education program is nationally recognized by the American Diabetes Association. Diabetes education helps patients become more aware of their diabetes, what it takes to treat it, and gives them the power to better control it. With the addition of Dr. Thomas Repas, Campbell County Medical Group Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism, we're seeing some new focus placed on the program as the doctor asks all his new patients with diabetes to see the diabetes educators prior to their first appointment. He wants his patients to have the advantage of diabetes education within the last year.

Kim Handley, RD, LD, CDE, and Melissa Gorsuch, RN, are the two educators who help diabetics in our community learn the knowledge and skills needed to successfully self-manage diabetes and prevent complications. These educators see adults and children with Type 1, Type 2 and gestational diabetes. During visits patients learn:

  • what diabetes is and how to manage it
  • how food affects blood glucose
  • how to eat healthier, among other things.

A patient's first appointment with a diabetes educator will consist of an initial assessment to determine their specific education needs—Kim or Melissa with tailor a program specifically for the patient. Patient's will meet with the educators roughly three to four visits in a one to two month period. Please know that doctors can refer patients for diabetes education sessions, or they can self-refer; however, patients are encouraged to check their insurance plans for specifics as most insurance plans and Medicare/Medicaid cover these services.

In the future, CCH plans to expand its diabetes education program. Patients with diabetes will soon be able to take advantage of a comprehensive diabetes education program that's actively being developed. Future enhancements include community classes, seminars and workshops to promote healthy lifestyles for patients with diabetes and pre-diabetes. Insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitoring are also planned options for patients.

For more information about CCH's Diabetes Education program, please visit www.cchwyo.org/diabetes or call 307-688-3615.

A big round of applause to the Diabetes Education program staff! Thank you for all that you do for keeping our community healthy.