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Thankfully, companies aren't just making straight-up gadgets anymore for helping us manage our diabetes. Last week, I was able to sit in on a training webinar for CDEs on recognizing and treating depression.
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Now we've learned that there's a new non-profit organization on the block aimed specifically at serving those diabetes educators who already have the "certified" tag behind their names.It's called the Academy of Certified Diabetes Educators (ACDE), and as the name suggests, it's all about training and connecting CDEs working "in the trenches" with PWDs. NCBDE understands the increasing need for educators to support a growing population of people with diabetes, but also feel it's important to balance access with ensuring a level of quality to that educational process. Frankly, I think the diabetes community is looking for a certification for non-health (formally) educated experts. All three of these professions require their members to log a certain number of continuing medical education (so-called CME) hours to maintain their licenses.
This spirit is embodied by every member of our team and we are happy to have the opportunity to demonstrate our commitment to our patients. Unfortunately, I do not have a nursing degree, nor an MSW, nor am I a registered dietician.

The organization has made a number of changes over the past few years regarding eligibility that people might not be aware of and we hope people will visit our web site (ncbde.org) for the most current information.
I know there are constraints about offering that type of certification, but it can be done.
We don't want to reinvent the wheel, but we have to bring all of these resources together so they're more well-publicized, affordable and accessible," Day says.AADE itself appears to be blindsided and somewhat disgruntled about this. Here are some important facts: 1) the professional practice aspect of the eligibility requirements for the CDE credential is not 2000 hours of diabetes education within 2 years. The first person perspective is so valuable to us PWDs, NCBDE would be re-miss and is certainly missing an opportunity to meet this need. I am hoping I can become a dietician, but wonder if I will ever be able to accrue the necessary 2,000 hours. It's 2 years of general experience (not necessarily diabetes) and a minimum of 1000 hours doing diabetes education over a maximum window of 4 years. In any case, a point I would like to make here is that while I have met a handful of CDE's who really seem to understand what it is like to really live with this disease, I have met many who do not.
Nelson, at first glance, seems an odd choice to teach diabetes educators about PWDs and depression.
The only true way to recognize those in diabetes education is through certification," says Dr. I am not saying that just living with Type I diabetes successfully should be enough to make a person a CDE, but this disease is so very complex that only those truly qualified to advise patients (and their caregivers, if they are children, or their spouses, if they are married) should ever endeavor to enter the field of diabetes education.
But Nelson spent 19 years in our trenches working at the International Diabetes Center in Minneapolis, from 1984 until 2003, when he went into private practice.
Since that time he has worked with PWDs on both sex issues and garden variety depression, been a speaker at many TCOYD events, and has written for the Diabetes Self-Management blog . The ACDE operates as a "virtual" organization but has a mailing address in the Chicago area, where the group can meet in a geographically-central spot.Status QuarrelThe NCBDE certification process has long been criticized as a barrier to bringing new blood into this profession.

Rather, the current model that is being used when promoting licensure includes a pathway where a health professional can become licensed without passing a psychometrically valid examination verifying their diabetes knowledge.
To become certified, one must be a licensed healthcare professional and then rack up 2,000 hours of experience over two years working directly with diabetes patients (without yet having certification to do so) to be eligible to sit for an extensive exam.
However, people with diabetes need to be assured that an individual who is licensed by their state as a diabetes educator has proven that they have a certain level of diabetes knowledge. Without the hours of work experience, hopefuls are not eligible for the exam, which is clearly a hurdle to many.
With a pathway that allows licensure without an examination, the current model does not address this need.
Also, as Pihos notes, some educators may work in facilities where research is the priority, rather than hands-on patient care, and some folks in rural areas may not have access to a center where the NCBDE exam is given.So AADE has been working in recent years to be more inclusive of educators who do not have certification, and to afford them a tiered-level status of state licensed educator (FAQ here). Note that a little over 60% of AADE members are CDEs, but you don't have to be a CDE to be a member.The new ACDE rejects this approach.
Limited access to these programs is the other beef that ACDE aims to address.During her time as an auditor for ADA programs in the past, Day says she'd noticed that many small D-education programs have been cutting back on their continuing education. There's likely going to be an increasingly steep decline in CDEs over the coming decade, especially as more and more of those professionals opt for higher-paying corporate jobs over clinical practice.One way to counteract that CDE drain is to focus more on the aspiring educators and students, Day says.
That's something the existing organizations haven't been doing effectively, and the shortage of CDEs will become critical if more work isn't done to usher a new generation into the profession.
And the academy plans to make its website a "one-stop shop" for CDEs to get low-cost (or even free) access to webinars and resources to help them in their jobs.Already, the academy has a career center on its site where CDEs or those entering the field can post a resume and look for job opportunities. And to help recruit new members, the ACDE is offering free membership for the first two years.Patient VoicesWith six initial board members, Day says they're planning to recruit more later this year and they'd like to include student and patient voices in that group (which we applaud).

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