World Diabetes Day 2022: Access to diabetes care

World Diabetes Day (14 November) 2022 continues the ‘access to diabetes care’ campaign, stretching 2021-2023. However this year specifically focuses on, the need for better access to quality diabetes education for the healthcare workforce and people living with diabetes.  

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) reports that more than 90% of diabetes care is self-care and required 24/7 management. Naturally, better access to quality diabetes education for people living with diabetes and the health workforce hinges on social, cultural and psychological determinants of health and a myriad of other things. Co-designed health information, delivered by Indigenous healthcare workers in a culturally safe environment, also plays a significant role in empowering people to (self)care for and manage their diabetes.

Whilst the delivery of diabetes education and information to people living with diabetes is very important in terms of timely access and being culturally safe and appropriate. The healthcare worker also needs to have easy access to suitable education and up-skilling regularly.

This article aims to provide some of the ways in which to access diabetes education for yourself, your team and your clients, to ensure that people living with diabetes can self- manage diabetes well, 24/7. 

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are 3x more likely than non-Indigenous Australians to be living with diabetes. Diabetes accounts for 7.3% of Indigenous Australians deaths, 4.8x that of non-Indigenous Australians (AIHW 2019).

It is obviously very important for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health workforce to be across diabetes, as well as other conditions such as heart and kidney disease which also significantly affects Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Whilst it’s important for the health workforce to be informed and across the latest evidence based diabetes information, it is also important to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living with diabetes are registered with the National Diabetes Services Scheme (NDSS) to ensure they can access, from the local pharmacy, subsidised diabetes product (e.g. blood glucose monitoring strips) and through Diabetes Australia and State and Territory Organisations, educational services (over the phone, face-to-face and online education and information).

For a person living with diabetes to be registered with the NDSS, a certifying health professional needs to complete and sign the form. The following health professionals are authorised to access the NDSS Health Professional Portal and all NDSS forms:

  • Credentialled Diabetes Educator (CDE)
  • Endocrinologist / Diabetologist
  • General Practitioner
  • Nurse Practitioner
  • Practice Nurse
  • Other registered medical practitioner who specialises in diabetes.

For more information on the NDSS Health Professional Portal please click on here.

There is a great and growing range of diabetes educational offerings available for the health workforce. The following outlines a good selection of upskilling and/or refresher offerings:

For more information on diabetes education for the health workforce and or people living with or at risk of diabetes, please head to the Diabetes Australia website here OR call the NDSS Helpline on 1800 637 700 to speak with a health professional.

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