The Components of a Diabetes Toolkit for People with Diabetes
1. Read appropriate information from trusted sources
- a. Books written by experts in the field
- b. Online sites that are reputable-do not believe reports that diabetes can be cured with a new herb, etc.
- c. Mentors from acknowledged organizations: American Diabetes Association (ADA), Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF), Children with Diabetes
2. Have a working knowledge of medications required to treat your form of diabetes (insulin, oral medications)
3. Know the basic laboratory tests necessary for quality diabetes care. (hb A1c, lipid profile, renal function tests, thyroid tests, urine microalbumin/creatinine ratio, serum tissue transglutaminase for celiac disease, etc.)
4. If you do not have access to an endocrinologist, find a general practitioner or internist who is willing to learn and access the appropriate information
5. Be aware of related medical subspecialties that relate to diabetes care (podiatry, nephrologist, gastroenterologist, ophthalmologist, neurologist, psychiatrist, etc.)
6. Learn about nutritional options: portion control, carbohydrate counting, low carbohydrate diet, etc.
7. If you care for a child/teen with diabetes, learn about the 504 plan (Americans with Disabilities Act).
8. Be aware of the insurance options available to you (Medicaid, Medicare)
9. Learn about cost-savings options (meters, strips, etc.) from others (such as other MyDiabetesCentral bloggers).
10. Work with a healthcare professional and treat as an ally, so that you can reach your goals together. Don't go it alone