Purpose and Mission
Diabetes educators are specialists in preventing and treating diabetes. These health professionals have undertaken further study to focus on helping people with diabetes self-manage their diabetes and minimize complications.
A diabetes educator should be your initial contact if you need more information, support or motivation in the management of your diabetes. These experts have a great deal of knowledge on all aspects of diabetes and can recognise when you need to consult with other members of your health care team.
Note that anyone who is overweight or who has a family history of diabetes should see a diabetes educator, and especially those with pre-diabetes
Most diabetes educators work at hospitals or clinics, and many are employed by government agencies. Many work largely independently, but may report to a mid-level healthcare administrator or similar position.
Supervisory responsibilities vary greatly among diabetes educators. More experienced professionals may oversee their junior colleagues, and may be involved in both training and evaluation. Some diabetes educators also move up into healthcare management positions.
Most, but not all, employers require diabetes educators to be credentialled. A credentialled diabetes educator fully complies with the Australian Diabetes Educators Association standards of practice, has earned a postgraduate certificate in diabetes education and management from an ADEA accredited University, meets all the ADEA professional development and clinical experience requirements, and is legally registered to practise in their primary discipline as
• Registered nurses
• Accredited practising dietitians
• Registered medical practitioners
• Registered pharmacists accredited to conduct medication management
• Registered podiatrist
Responsibilities of a Diabetes Educator
Diabetes educators specialise in diabetes self-management education for people with all types of diabetes (and pre-diabetes).
These highly trained healthcare professionals provide support for those with diabetes, including gestational diabetes, integrating clinical care, self-management education, skills training and information about specific conditions to help patients to:
- Understand diabetes and make optimal lifestyle and treatment choices
- Incorporate more exercise into their daily lives
- Use their medicines effectively and safely
- Monitor and interpret their blood glucose
- Understand that all persons with diabetes should have access to a diabetes educator.
Reasons for referral to a diabetes educator include:
- Initial diagnosis of diabetes or pre-diabetes
- Introducing or changing diabetes medicines and/or starting insulin therapy
- Glycaemic targets or desired clinical goals not met
- Minimal self-care knowledge, skills or confidence
- Recurrent or notable episodes of hypoglycaemia and/or ketoacidosis
- Diagnosis of chronic diabetes complications or related comorbidities
Diabetes Educator Jobs and Employers
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