Diabetes: More than a word, much more than a diagnosis
As a family doctor based in Brooklyn, New York, who has served the needs of my community since completing residency in 1982, I find myself with a unique privilege and opportunity to observe disease and wellness, the effects of lifestyle, policy and the collective efforts of myself and others, as we attempt to keep our patients well and affect the statistical bottom line. I’m typing this as I also think about the more than 10% of diabetics who are listed in my practice. A prime example of a need for population management if there ever was one.
Given my large population of diabetes patients and years, upon years of experience diagnosing and treating this disease, I wanted to share my story and approach to managing this population.
While there has been some improvement due to total team effort between my staff, insurance company reminders, patient education and incentives to patients, still greater than 50% remained uncontrolled with A1c levels greater than 7.0% and 20% with A1c levels greater than 10.0%. Tragically, we have had patients that have lost sight, limbs and kidneys in the last year to uncontrolled diabetes, Every cardiovascular complication has been manifest in one way or the other.