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AMA Expands Diabetes Prevention Effort Into More States

Mary Caffrey
The American Medical Association (AMA) will expand an existing effort to prevent type 2 diabetes (T2D) beyond 3 states into 8 new ones, building on earlier work to keep 84 million Americans with prediabetes from progressing to the disease.

Last year, the AMA launched collaborations with medical societies in California, Michigan, and South Carolina to create model programs that can be replicated nationwide. This year, AMA will take those lessons and apply them in work with professional societies in Maine, Mississippi, Maryland, New York, Oregon, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island.

AMA has been working with the CDC for more than 2 years get more primary care physicians involved with diabetes prevention. The goal is to get physicians to screen at-risk patients and refer those who meet criteria for prediabetes to the National Diabetes Prevention Program (DPP), which is already covered by many commercial insurance plans and will be covered by Medicare starting in April 2018. These evidence-based programs have been shown to reduce the risk of developing T2D by 58% by promoting gradual, sustainable lifestyle changes.

“Using what we’ve learned through our ongoing work, we will have more opportunities to get more patients into proven programs that can help patients prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes,” said AMA President David O. Barbe, MD, in a statement.

The National DPP is offered in both community-based and digital formats, including by non-clinical providers. Helping physicians connect patients with a non-clinical provider is a new challenge, and to do this the American Diabetes Association has partnered with Solera Health to give patients and physicians a way to connect patients with programs that meet their needs.

Clinical Care Commission. This week, diabetes prevention received another boost when President Donald Trump signed the National Clinical Care Commission Act, which establishes a national commission of experts to find ways to advance diabetes care and prevention. The law was sponsored by Senators Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Jeanne Shaheen, D-New Hampshire.

The law does the following:
  • Identifies gaps in diabetes care and management;
  • Eliminates duplication and policy conflicts by federal agencies;
  • Leverages federal research funds by evaluating best practices and tools for diabetes healthcare professionals and patients;
  • Studies the use of data collection and how well data are used within existing programs.
  • Offers guidance on diabetes clinical care to maximize the effectiveness of federal investment on diabetes research.

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