Collaboration Encouraged at Patient-Centered Diabetes Care Event


A session hosted by the American Journal of Managed Care brought together an array of groups involved in managing and treating diabetes.

A session hosted by the American Journal of Managed Care brought together an array of groups involved in managing and treating diabetes.

In order to best serve diabetes patients, all those involved in managing the condition—including physicians, pharmacists, health plans, policymakers, and drug developers—must have a seat at the table. To foster collaboration among a number of these groups, a session titled “Patient-Centered Diabetes Care: Future Directions” was held at the University of Chicago Law School on June 20. The session was hosted by the American Journal of Managed Care in conjunction with Precision Health Economics.

The event was timed to take place just before the beginning of the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association (ADA), which is being held June 21 to 25 in Chicago. Earlier this year, the ADA announced the results of a study finding that the total economic burden of diabetes in the United States reached $245 billion in 2012, a 41% increase since 2007. In March 2013, the American Journal of Managed Care launched Evidence-Based Diabetes Management, an indexed news publication, to help create a shared forum for physicians, health plans, pharmaceutical leaders, and policymakers.

“When the ADA announced the rise in the financial and human toll that diabetes takes from our economy and from the lives of everyday Americans, it was alarming, but sadly, not entirely surprising,” said Brian Haug, president of Intellisphere Managed Markets, which publishes the American Journal of Managed Care and Evidence-Based Diabetes Management. “Because we are in close touch with the medical community and have been for nearly two decades, we were already responding to this crisis. This week’s meeting is a continuation of that response.”

The event’s keynote speaker was Anne Peters, MD, CDE, director of the clinical diabetes program at the University of Southern California. Panel discussions addressed topics including individualizing diabetes patient treatment, the effect of diabetes patient behavior on quality of care and outcomes, and methods of improving patient adherence to diabetes medications and therapies. In the closing address, Deneen Vojta, MD, senior vice president for business initiatives and clinical affairs at UnitedHealth Group, discussed how to develop relationships between health insurers and drug developers.

Pharmacists also have the potential to play an important role in improving diabetes treatment outcomes. A study published in the May 15, 2013, edition of the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy found that type 2 diabetes patients who were treated by a team of providers including a clinical pharmacist were significantly more likely to reach blood glucose, LDL cholesterol, and blood pressure goals than those treated by a primary care physician alone. (Click here to read our article about this study.)

At Pharmacy Times, we offer regular coverage of news relating to diabetes treatment. Earlier this month, we covered a study published in BMJ finding that use of some statins can lead to increased risk of new-onset diabetes. In April, we covered the newly released diabetes treatment guidelines from the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists.

The print edition of Pharmacy Times regularly features Diabetes Watch, a round-up of notable recent studies. Our May 2013 issue included a review of diabetes apps that harness the power of mobile technology to help patients monitor and improve their condition. And, for a comprehensive look at diabetes as it relates to pharmacy, our October 2012 Diabetes Issue is an invaluable resource.

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