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DSMT Toolkit

Chapter 8. Ten National Standards for Diabetes Self-Management Education

The two CMS-approved accrediting organizations for DSMT base their accreditation process on the national standards for diabetes education. The national standards were developed after the convening of a joint task force of the American Diabetes Association, American Association of Diabetes Educators, and other stakeholders in 2012. This task force developed a series of established standards that must be included in any structured DSMT program.

The ten DSME National Standards include the following:

Standard 1 - Internal Structure
The provider(s) of DSME will document an organizational structure, mission statement, and goals. For those providers working within a larger organization, that organization will recognize and support quality DSME as an integral component of diabetes care.

Standard 2 - External Input
The provider(s) of DSME will seek ongoing input from external stakeholders and experts to promote program quality.

Standard 3 - Access
The provider(s) of DSME will determine whom to serve, how best to deliver diabetes education to that population, and what resources can provide ongoing support for that population.

Standard 4 - Program Coordination
A coordinator will be designated to oversee the DSME program. The coordinator will have oversight responsibility for the planning, implementation, and evaluation of education services.

Standard 5 - Instructional Staff
One or more instructors will provide DSME and, when applicable, DSMS. At least one of the instructors responsible for designing and planning DSME and DSMS will be an RN, RD, or pharmacist with training and experience pertinent to DSME, or another professional with certification in diabetes care and education, such as a CDE or BC-ADM. Other health workers can contribute to DSME and provide DSMS with appropriate training in diabetes and with supervision and support.

Standard 6 - Curriculum
A written curriculum reflecting current evidence and practice guidelines, with criteria for evaluating out- comes, will serve as the framework for the provision of DSME. The needs of the individual participant will determine which parts of the curriculum will be pro-vided to that individual

Standard 7 - Individualization
The diabetes self-management, education, and support needs of each participant will be assessed by one or more instructors. The participant and instructor(s) will then together develop an individualized education and support plan focused on behavior change.

Standard 8 - Ongoing Support
The participant and instructor(s) will together develop a personalized follow-up plan for ongoing self- management support. The participant’s outcomes and goals and the plan for ongoing self-management sup- port will be communicated to other members of the healthcare team.

Standard 9 - Patient Progress
The provider(s) of DSME and DSMS will monitor whether participants are achieving their personal diabetes self- management goals and other outcome(s) as a way to evaluate the effectiveness of the educational intervention(s), using appropriate measurement techniques.

Standard 10 - Quality Improvement
The provider(s) of DSME will measure the effectiveness of the education and support and look for ways to improve any identified gaps in services or service quality, using a systematic review of process and outcome data.

Each accreditation body has its own accreditation process. When submitting for accreditation, the program must adhere to the accreditation requirements of the entity it chooses to seek accreditation from—either AADE or ADA. Both organizations incorporate the 10 national standards into their process, but the accreditation process varies depending on which organization accredits a program.

When preparing for accreditation, it is important to closely review the differences between the two accrediting organizations. Once an accrediting organization is chosen, the DSMT program must meet the minimum accreditation requirements for initial accreditation, and maintain those requirements for subsequent reaccreditation. The length of time that a single accreditation term lasts depends on the accrediting organization. In determining the length of the accreditation period, the accrediting organization considers multiple factors including the outcome of the initial accreditation review.

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