Student Poster

Interprofessional Approach to Female Patients with Type II Diabetes Mellitus in New Orleans

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Interprofessional practice and education (IPE)

Diabetes has a significant impact on the modern world. Among 37 million Americans with diabetes, 90-95% have type II diabetes. Risk factors for developing diabetes include family history, obesity, lack of exercise, and unhealthy diet. Complications of type II diabetes include diabetic neuropathy, vision/hearing loss, cardiovascular disease, and mental health issues. Eleven pre-licensure healthcare students representing dental hygiene, dentistry, medicine, nursing, physical therapy, and physician assistant programs collaborated on an interprofessional approach to type II diabetes. Each profession researched evidence-based tests, labs, exams and education that should be included in a wellness visit focused on secondary prevention. The interprofessional student team determined costs for assessments and identified duplication and referrals as applicable. After finalizing the measures performed by each profession, a plan was made that was defined as an annual wellness visit. The group detailed the benefits and costs for the annual wellness visit, approximate time for completion, risk factors, resources, and concluded with a reflection of lessons learned throughout the interprofessional exercise. Specific roles were assigned to each of the 7 professions for the patient’s annual wellness visit. Physicians would perform the initial primary visit for diagnosis followed by a physician’s assistant, dentist, physical therapists, nurses, and referrals to a nutritionist and occupational therapist. Overall, the annual wellness visit would take 5 hours total, costing on average $903.50 without insurance. With insurance, the price would decrease and vary based on the insurance company and plan. Additionally, a Health Box, a box of resources to maintain a healthy lifestyle with type II diabetes and establish patient education, was created to be given to each patient at the annual wellness visit. It included an educational pamphlet on lifestyle with type II diabetes, a water bottle, a glucose meter and strips, and a QR code for a HealthBox app to access workout regimens and meal plans. Interprofessional teamwork is vital in patient-centered care, especially in chronic diseases. Without interprofessional cooperation, mistakes could be made and patients could receive inconsistent care. Visits to one healthcare provider would screen patients only once a year. With interprofessional efforts, a patient can be screened for oral cancer by dentistry, checked for diabetic neuropathy by physical therapy, and have mental health assessments by nursing. Additionally, education of all members of the healthcare team concerning diet, including nutritionists referrals, would prove beneficial. It ensures efficiency by diagnosing and treating the patient early to slow disease progression.