Most people can already tell that diabetes is a growing health concern in the United States. According to information obtained from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as of 2015, 30.3 million Americans – or 9.4 percent of the population – had diabetes. On the bright side, rapid technological advances are making it easier for people with diabetes to manage their condition. One such advance is telehealth for diabetes care, which allows patients to connect with healthcare professionals via phone or computer screen for diagnosis, treatment, and education.
Telehealth-Related Challenges in Diabetes Care
During the COVID-19 pandemic, telehealth has become an essential tool for delivering healthcare services. However, certain challenges must be considered when using telehealth in diabetes care.
Diabetes self-care education is critical to diabetes management, yet patients often do not receive adequate instruction on caring for their condition. This can result in poor blood sugar regulation, increased complications, and reduced quality of life.
Self-care education should be individualized to the needs of each patient, taking into account their level of understanding and ability to manage their condition. Instruction should cover all aspects of self-care, including diet, exercise, medication use, and blood sugar monitoring. Ultimately, adequate diabetes self-care education can empower patients to manage their condition better and improve their overall quality of life.
A big challenge in diabetes care is ensuring patients have access to the technology and support to use the platform effectively. For many people with diabetes, telehealth may be their only form of contact with their healthcare team.
They must clearly understand how to use the platform and navigate its features easily. In addition, patients need to feel comfortable sharing personal health information with their care team. Without the proper support and guidance, many patients may hesitate to use telehealth platforms. As such, healthcare providers must ensure that patients can access the resources and support needed to use telehealth effectively.
With these challenges in mind, providing high-quality diabetes care through telehealth is still possible. By working together, healthcare providers and patients can overcome these challenges and ensure that diabetes care remains accessible and high-quality during the pandemic.
Benefits of Telehealth in Diabetes Care
Telehealth has been used for numerous years to care for patients in rural and underserved areas.
A recent study showed that diabetics who used telehealth had a 30% lower no-show rate than those who did not use telehealth. This is likely because patients are more likely to see their provider when they can do so from their homes.
In addition, telehealth can save patients time and money by eliminating the need to travel to appointments. For example, a patient who lives in a rural area may be able to avoid the time and expense of traveling to see a specialist by using telehealth.
Use of Telehealth in Diabetes Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic
The consumer adoption of Telehealth in Diabetes Care has skyrocketed, as lockdown measures have limited the movement of people from their homes, and patients with chronic conditions such as diabetes are at higher risk for complications.
Diabetes is a condition that is heavily tied to lifestyle modifications. Telehealth can help improve communication between patients and their healthcare providers and provide patients with support and education about their condition.
As the world slowly adjusts to the pandemic, it is clear that telehealth will play an increasingly important role in diabetes care.