NASHVILLE — Clinical and community-based interventions highlighting lifestyle modifications can reduce comorbidities and healthcare costs of type 2 diabetes, according to a poster presented at the American Association of Nurse Practitioners 2014 meeting.
By 2034, the number of patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes is projected to double, and medical costs to treat the condition will nearly triple, reported Doreen Cassarino, DNP, FNP-BC, BC-ADM.
“Lifetime costs estimates clearly show that if type 2 diabetes and diabetic complications can be prevented, a substantial downstream cost could be potentially realized,” said Cassarino.
Primary-care providers at a community-based outpatient primary-care clinic referred at-risk type 2 diabetes patients to a prediabetes class.
The 90 minute group session conducted by an American Diabetes Association certified diabetes educator included an explanation of the type 2 diabetes and prediabetes and potential medical complications. The class emphasized therapeutic lifestyle changes as a key to preventing type 2 diabetes.
There was a significant reduction in glycohemoglobin (mean reduction, 0.3 mg/dl) and weight (mean reduction, 1.3 pounds) in patients who attended the education program.
“Nurse practitioners, the front line primary-care provider, can significantly impact their patients’ long-term health, the health of the community, and the economic viability of the healthcare system by identifying patients at risk to develop type 2 diabetes,” concluded Cassarino.
- Cassarino D. XXX. “Pre-Diabetes Education: An Innovative Approach to Improving the Health of the Individual, the Community and the Healthcare System.” Presented at: AANP 2014. June 17-22; Nashville, Tenn.