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I N T E RV I E W Patient Education Is Essential for Proper Diabetes Care For the roughly 30 million Americans What is the goal of these workshops? with diabetes, keeping the condition Substantial evidence shows diabetes education improves the health of patients — from overall glucose control and blood pressure to weight loss and other aspects of health. Research shows that if you provide an instructive and interactive education program, you can affect diabetes care in a positive manner. If patients go through a set of classes with follow-up, glucose will be impacted similar to standard diabetes medications. We want to provide the foundation to help patients for many years to come. under control is essential to prevent potentially fatal complications. UCLA endocrinologist Matthew Freeby, MD, notes that successful diabetes management goes well beyond what takes place in the doctor’s office — indeed, what patients do on their own in terms of diet, exercise and monitoring their blood-sugar levels is critical to their health. With that in mind, UCLA Health is expanding education for patients with type 2 diabetes within UCLA primary-care settings through daylong workshops and one-on-one follow-up visits with diabetes educators. Dr. Freeby, associate director of diabetes clinical programs for UCLA Health, discusses the rationale behind these efforts. Matthew Freeby, MD UCLAHEALTH.ORG 1-800-UCLA-MD1 (1-800-825-2631) Why is it particularly important to reach diabetes patients within the primary-care setting? That’s where the bulk of type 2 diabetes care takes place in this country. About 9 percent of the U.S. population has type 2 diabetes, so it would be impossible for endocrinologists to take care of all of them. Because the majority