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Missouri Expands Diabetes Education Offerings in Pharmacies

State: Missouri

Submitted Date: 2018

Public Health Issue
  • Missouri needs more diabetes self-management education (DSME) programs to meet the need indicated by its high rate of diabetes.
  • Because people with diabetes usually need medicine, they often have a relationship with a community pharmacist that provides an opportunity to engage them in the evidence-based DSME programs that can help them to control their disease. Yet setting up such programs is difficult for community pharmacies due to program accreditation fees and the time and experience required.
  • Helping community pharmacists establish diabetes self-management education programs is a promising avenue for making diabetes education more available.
Program Action
  • The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (MODHSS) works with the Missouri Pharmacy Association to expand pharmacist services related to diabetes with funding support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  • The MODHSS-funded pharmacy expansion initiative supports Diabetes Accreditation Standards-Practical Applications (DASPA) training, which is designed to increase patient access to accredited DSME programs by offering independent community pharmacies a way to enhance their patient care services and to achieve DSME site accreditation. DASPA training is offered through the National Community Pharmacy Association and the American Association of Diabetes Educators.
  • Because it proved difficult to move pharmacies from the training phase, which focuses on business operations, to fully-accredited program implementation, a grant now supports the services of a Creative Pharmacist consultant and use of the STRAND platform to help each program meet the stringent accreditation requirements.
  • A project advertorial in the Missouri Pharmacy Association magazine and mass email communications raised awareness among pharmacists about the initiative.
  • The pharmacy expansion project expedited the creation of new DSME program sites by reducing or eliminating major barriers, including lack of experience developing diabetes programs, cost, and billing issues.
  • As a result, 44 new DSME sites successfully achieved site accreditation, benefitting from the DSME facilitator and site accreditation support provided through the project.
  • The turnkey nature of the pharmacy expansion project increased the interest level of pharmacists statewide and in the final year of the project, MODHSS expects to establish 20 more DSME sites. The MODHSS Diabetes Council will provide on-going professional development.
  • Sixty-seven percent of pharmacist respondents to a survey said the program increased their knowledge about diabetes as a chronic disease, and 58% said the program increased their skill level in helping patients manage their diabetes. “The programs paid for by PSE have expanded my practice in ways not otherwise possible. Our business is now much more equipped to aid the communities’ healthcare needs. We have added diabetes class offerings and are looking forward to adding more services,” said one participating community pharmacist. 
Jennifer L. Hunter
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services