Community pharmacists expand diabetes role

Thursday, September 17, 2009

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – Community pharmacists now have the opportunity to receive training on how to conduct educational classes for diabetes patients thanks to a new partnership between the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA) and the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE).

“NCPA’s expectation is that many of our members will seize on this opportunity, because they know a better educated diabetes patient can avoid the more debilitating but preventable aspects that come from the disease,” stated Bruce Roberts, executive vice president and CEO, in a Sept. 17 release.

After fulfilling 16 hours of Diabetes Self-Management Education/Training (DSME/T), provided by the NCPA and AADE, community pharmacists will be eligible to serve as instructors within accredited diabetes education programs. After accumulating a certain amount of hours, they will be eligible to take the certified diabetes educator exam.

The training will raise the profile of community pharmacists as clinically trained healthcare professionals and allow them to differentiate themselves from chain pharmacists and mail-order distributors of diabetes supplies.

Down the road, the training will also open the door to additional revenue. After completing the training, community pharmacists may apply to become accredited DSME/T programs, a requirement for reimbursement. To do this, they must have room to conduct classes, either in their pharmacies or in community facilities like senior centers.

Traditionally, DSME/T services have been offered only by hospitals.

The training will be offered no more than three times a year. The first opportunity: NCPA’s 111th Annual Convention Oct. 17-21 in New Orleans. To register, go to or call 866-575-4134.