I have been coming to this conference for years. It is great to meet up with those who support the DRI in so many different ways and to meet colleagues who are deep into the fight for PWDs and their caretakers. I have written many times how crucial the diabetes educator is as we navigate the diabetes obstacle course.
It is an education to meet so many educators who are also here and listen; to learn and to share. It is an atmosphere that is always filled with many new things being added to the diabetes landscape. Positive things.
This year was different.
It was certainly great to see so many people who I only see a few times a year but this year there was a new guest at this conference and it was “I Just Don’t Know.”
Never before do I remember so many issues that face us as parents, that face those with diabetes, that have me concerned as I am now. The profile of our healthcare world is heading to an area that will impact us in ways that has not been seen before. I’m not trying to alarm anyone but I highly suggest you stay informed. To those asked, the response was the same many times, “we just don’t know”.
Three different diabetes educators shared that their hospital was cutting back and the diabetes program was at the top of the list to be cut. What? It amazes me that with so many people impacted by diabetes that this would even be a thought and all three said the same thing; there is no money allocated to education. Financial concerns for diabetes is at an all time high.
Another issue, which is turning out to be a big issue, is the accuracy of test strips. A very detailed explanation made shorter is this: the cost of strips is based on the price that Medicaid and medicare will pay for reimbursement which has just been set at an all time low. One would think that is good news because it should translate that the bigger companies would just drop their cost to match that number, right? Well not necessarily because the companies that the government chooses to supply the strips is based on cost. So if a supply company overseas, that has much less accuracy standards is chosen, and the FDA chooses not to make sure the standards of accuracy are met; we may have a real problem.
Bennet Dunlap, a d-dad, is about as straight-shooter you will ever meet. He is incredibly passionate and it takes much to see Bennet concerned; and Bennet is concerned over this issue, very concerned. And so are many of us. PLEASE join his site and stay informed. This is an issue that is evolving as we speak and Bennet and many others of our good friends in the diabetes community are going to fight this, and fight it hard. Click here and join his Strip Safely site. Also make sure you click the ‘issue’ tab after you join so you can read in more detail what I have touched upon here.
There are many issues in the heath care world that are changing. I heard it so many times this week that the diabetes world of next year will be vastly different from the one from this year. Again not to scare anyone but to implore you to stay educated. Read. Learn. And for goodness sake if action is needed and people will inform you as to when and how, please take it.
We may very well be the only controller of our collective fates; we need to be educated, armed, and ready as we come to this cross-road.
I am a diabetesdad
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