Access to diabetes care - If not now, when?
(International Diabetes Federation)
World Diabetes Day 2022 takes place on November 14, 2022. Through the theme "Access to Diabetes Care", the International Diabetes Federation hopes to raise awareness that millions of people with diabetes around the world do not have access to diabetes care, and that people with diabetes require ongoing care and support to manage their condition and avoid complications.
The warning signs can include: excessive thirst, frequent urination, a lack of energy, blurred vision, slow healing wounds, and numbness in the feet and/or hands.
Whether you have or are at-risk of type 1 or 2 diabetes, many pharmacies across British Columbia offer diabetes screening, education and management as part of their clinical offerings. A pharmacist with a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) designation can help you with diabetes education and management so that you can make informed decisions about your health and lifestyle.
Spotlight on Pharmacists: Community Pharmacists Bring Heart To South Asian Population
Pharmacist and business owner Nafisa Merali walks through the doors of her Surrey-based pharmacy, Naz’s Pharmacy, and immediately recognizes a patient, stopping to ask how they are doing. The popular pharmacy, located at 72nd Avenue and 125th Street is brimming with a steady stream of patients, many lining up for free glucose testing and counselling, at times blocking the entrance.
Located in a tiny neighbourhood strip mall across from a South Asian grocery store, the cozy pharmacy has become a pillar of health and wellness to the Surrey community, where many patients struggle with the negative effects of diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease, among other illnesses. In fact, according to Fraser Health’s South Asian Health Institute (SAHI), South Asians are two to three times more likely to develop heart and kidney disease, stroke and diabetes 10 years earlier in comparison to other ethnic groups.
“Every day, our goal is to educate patients and guide them in their journey to health and wellbeing,” says Nafisa “We have witnessed firsthand the difference that proper education, diet and medication can make in the lives of not only our patients struggling with diabetes and high blood pressure, but to their entire families, who now have a healthy member of the family again. It really is an honour to be a part of making that difference.”
Click here to read more about what Pharmacist Nafisa Merali is doing to help the South Asian community gain a better understanding about their health, in particular when it comes to diabetes.
Member Profile: A Q&A With Elaine Cooke, Diabetes Educator Of The Year Winner
Recently honoured by Diabetes Canada as the Diabetes Educator of the Year in 2019, Elaine Cooke has made a meaningful impact on diabetes education over the course of her career as pharmacist and Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE).
In addition to her work with patients as a long-time employee of Safeway, where she travelled across B.C. to provide diabetes clinics for Safeway patients, Cooke was Editor-in-Chief of the Diabetes Communicator, Diabetes Canada’s professional publication, and creator of the BC Pharmacy Association’s Diabetes Health Coaching program.
A nationally recognized speaker and Canadian Pharmacists Association’s 2005 Pharmacist Diabetes Educator of the Year, Cooke’s career-defining specialization was originally inspired by her mother, who suffered from diabetes.
“From my mother having diabetes, I focused on learning as much as I could to help my diabetes patients,” says Cooke. “I feel that pharmacists, as the most accessible health-care professional, have a lot to offer in disease management. With one in three Canadians affected by diabetes, it is a great place to start.”
Click here to read more about what Pharmacist Elaine Cooke considers her proudest accomplishment as a Certified Diabetes Educator.
Resources for Pharmacists and the Public
Are you at risk of having pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes? Take the self-assessment from Public health Agency of Canada to find out. Click here to begin!
The risk scores that you will receive is not a substitute for actual clinical diagnosis. If you have any concerns, please consider discussing your results with a pharmacist.
Training courses for pharmacists (login to BCPhA eTraining required)
- Innovation In Diabetes Management: Coaching Pharmacists On Flash Glucose Monitoring
- Diabetes management is constantly evolving with new technology that allows patients to better screen glucose levels and gives pharmacists the ability to personalize the treatment plan for the patient. Join Lori Berard, a nurse consultant, as she reviews the latest clinical evidence on flash glucose monitoring and how it fits in the continuum of care for diabetes management.
- The Role Of Technology In Diabetes Management
- Learn more about the increasing role of technology in glucose monitoring for patients living with diabetes with pharmacist Pindy Janda, General Manager, Clinical and Specialty Division, at Imperial Distributors. Practical tips on engaging patients and explaining the value of sensor-based technologies will be discussed compared to conventional strategies.
- Diabetes And Cardiovascular Disease In 2022
- People with diabetes are three times more likely to die of cardiovascular disease, with increased risk of high blood pressure, narrowing of the arteries, coronary artery disease and stroke. Learn how to apply the latest Canadian guidelines when selecting pharmacological treatments for patients with cardiovascular disease with or without type 2 diabetes, review factors to consider when choosing diabetes medications and review changes in the guidelines and what it means for pharmacists.