Diabetes as a public health problem impacts people who live with the disease psychologically, socially which results into economic stress. This calls for close intervention of specialist nurses in healthcare provision to control the complications of the disease, enabling the victims to manage their diabetic conditions.
This essay will discuss about Diabetes as a public health problem, its effects to the people who live with the disease, the roles, and responsibilities of nurses in healthcare implementation and delivery of Diabetes and how they will fit in a healthcare team.
Diabetes is a health condition that occurs when the glucose levels are higher than the normal range making the pancreas not to function properly. Diabetes and its associated disorders currently affect about a billion of people in the whole world (Roger, 2003). It is reported that in the range of 200 to 300 million people have either of the two types of diabetes disorders; high blood sugar levels or diabetes type 2 which puts a big number of people at high risk of future development of chronic diabetic disabilities. The majority of adults posses metabolic syndrome that renders them to the risk of type 2 diabetes development in the near future. Surprisingly, diabetes specialists take care of very few people having diabetes and its associated disorders. Several health professionals work in environments that are limited with resources for managing diabetes.
The rationale for diabetes disability
- To assess how diabetes and its disorders impacts people suffering from its disabilities in relation to their daily lives
- To discuss the roles that nursing plays in the implementation and care delivery to diabetic patients and the ability of nurses to interrelate with other health care teams in attending the clients.
Impacts of diabetes on the patients’ everyday lives
Diabetes, when ignored, causes several complications which are life-threatening such as high blood pressure, blindness, heart attack, and kidney failures which in later stage may cause death. The prolonged diabetes effects are as a result of patients not controlling their glucose levels. Early detection of the diabetes and its effects is very important in monitoring glucose levels, this helps to reduce or avoid the horrible effects such as; kidney damage, heart and nerve damages due to diabetes on patient’s body (Roger, 2000).
Psychological effects of diabetes
People who suffer from diabetes respond emotionally to their body hormone levels, they sometimes undergo strong mood changes. These patients may chaotically express their motions and even sometimes not aware of their severe mood changes. They may also criticize their family members and immediately forget about the conversation, these diabetic patients later cause emotional conflicts leading to relationship chaos (Zuraikat, 2001).
According to Rodney (2004), diabetes causes indirect costs that are related to its disabilities that result from its complications and just from the disease itself. Complications of microvascular diabetes for instance; neuropathy, retinopathy and nephropathy are the main contributors of blindness and nontraumatic amputation. He also argued that these patients infected with diabetes a doubled risk of acquiring macrovascular diseases as well as high mortality in relation to age-sex controls, this later leads to the death of approximately 70 percent of the diabetic patients suffering from its complications.
Human and social effects
The worldwide diabetes epidemic causes severe affects to the people and to the entire society. The suffering imposed on families such as; economic stress, disabilities and death are the major effects diabetes rather than the expenditures incurred in preventing it. Diabetes also harms everybody in the society and not just those who are diabetic; this has as well resulted into great annual loss of economic growth and development since much financial support is needed to manage diabetes and the frequent death caused by it.
It is estimated that about 3.8 million people die of diabetes each year in the world.. Deaths as well as disability rates are common phenomena in middle income and poor countries. This is because a good number of people who are infected with diabetes do not get adequate and proven treatments to control the disabling complications and the killings from the disease.
Family economic stress
People who have diabetes and their respective families bear the biggest cost of medical care in managing diabetes. This is particularly in poor countries with the poorest people living with diabetes spending too much of their income on personal care. They have to cater for treatment expenditures that can enable them to live and reduce blood sugar levels (Zuraikat, 2001).
The roles that nursing plays in diabetes care implementation and delivery
Diabetes and nursing care work together as the experts in the nursing line of work are the primary educators to the upcoming diabetic patients(Adler, 2000) When individuals are initially diagnosed with complications of diabetes, there is very much and important that they should be educated on especially on diet, monitoring glucose intensity, taking care of feet. It is therefore their specialist nursing staffs that work with the new diabetes patients. Today, there is an up-and-coming nursing specialty for those people who deal with patients that are diabetic, advanced education on diabetes and its complications. Diabetes is the kind of disease that if carefully managed, the patients can live with it for a long period of time. Currently there are millions of people with diabetes who are happily and actively living with this kind of chronic disease. However, they were educated in variety of areas so as to adjust on the necessary lifestyle decisions in keeping their diabetic complications under control. Such education was and currently is aided by the nurses and sometimes with nurse practitioners.
Majority of the registered nurses decide to specialize in a specific field to partake additional roles for caring and treating patients. Registered nurses get certification as diabetes specialists and educators. This has led to the availability of several nurse practitioners who become specialists in diabetes to provide patient care to diabetic people. Nursing as a health care profession, plays the following major roles in the implementation and delivery of care services to people infected and affected with diabetes.
Provision of patient care
Nursing provides care services to the diabetes patients. This needs the services of specialists in the area who possess thorough understanding of the body systems. As specialist in diabetes health care, nurses manage diabetes by providing medications, insulin levels check-ups and treating the upcoming complications from diabetes disorders.
Specialists can easily create awareness concerning diabetes among individuals Nurses who are certified in the national principles in patient education for diabetes, provide educational support to patients and potential patients on the issues of diabetes, this includes discussions about the prevention and care of diabetes with special attention on the diet, physical exercises and obesity disorders (Joslin, 1999).
A study conducted by Berry & Grey (2004) on the psychosocial interventions for compromised family management for pediatric, indicates that education interventions widely pass diabetes knowledge, however, are not reliable for the improvement of metabolic results. They argued that these psychosocial interventions for instance; self-efficacy, diabetes stress, behavioral family plans therapy initially showed metabolic control improvements, but family interventions are coming up as the best way for the improvement of interpersonal relations. Family involvements have also helped the adolescents in shifting from family-management to diabetes self-management.
Nursing provides diabetes specialists and practitioners with the needed ability to carry out medical tests, enthusiastically take diabetes diagnosis through blood glucose level examinations and insulin level test from patients with diabetes. They also closely monitor the effects of diabetes on patients to ensure that they are adverse to their bodies. If tested positive, the diabetic patients are referred to the particular doctors that are responsible for diabetes. The areas monitored by nurses are for instance; glucose monitoring with the help of blood glucose monitors, high blood pressure health checks, and dietary plans for the patient (Association of British Clinical Diabetologists, 2000).
The specialist nurses in diabetes are entrusted with the responsibility of containment costs attempts in health care management. Diabetes patients, who have constant problems that need immediate and frequent checkup by the nurse, undergo less cost unlike if they would like to see the doctor on their health issues.
According to the analysis by Loveman (2003) on the specialist nurses in the management of diabetes mellitus, examined that specialist nurses enable patients to self-manage the impacts of diabetes. His review, however, discovered that there was no supportive evidence to show the care of specialist nurses given to the adolescents. Loveman also argued that the patients who receive care support from the specialist nurses, they do not show improved health that distinct them from those their counterpart who find care from primary care that lacks the input of specialist nursing.
In the research carried by Adler (2000) on the attempts to obtain the importance for assessing the typical knowledge level of community nurses on diabetes mellitus, it was discovered that as per the standards of National Framework Service for Diabetes especially Mellitus, a standardized knowledge was required from variety of healthcare professionals. This was on the different studies and knowledge in diabetes mellitus in relation to health care subsections. The study also aimed at ensuring that substantial proportion in caring for diabetic patients is considered by major healthcare team with community nurses in particular. This ensured that for healthcare professionals to empower and provide education support to diabetic patients, they are required to sufficiently acquire comprehensive knowledge about the diabetes before imparting the appropriate needs for the patient.
How a nurse would work in healthcare team
In order to effectively work in a healthcare team as a nurse to achieve the overall control of diabetes, there is need to continuously arrive at consensus recommendation and making interactions with diversified healthcare professionals. This will enable to achieve a universal diabetes control among the patients, basing the control on the experience of the entire healthcare parties involved. This reflects that diabetic patients will potentially obtain great pieces of advice and expertise to reach their optimum achievement of the services from the healthcare team in managing diabetes. However, the roles of community nurses who are diabetic specialists are identified since they are the everyday contacts with the majority of diabetic patients within the community. This clearly supports the argument that a substantial responsibility for continuous morbidity of the entire population, relies in the hands of healthcare professionals for efficient management of diabetes conditions (Morris, 2000).
In summary, Diabetes and services of nursing care work closely in providing people who have diabetes with the necessary knowledge, tactics and tools that they need for successful management of their diabetes and how to prevent the several complications that are associated with the chronic disease. The disease also causes great economic and social impacts to both the patients and the entire society.
Adler, A.I. (2000). The importance for assessing the typical knowledge level of community nurses on diabetes mellitus. London: SAGE publishers.
Association of British Clinical Diabetologists (2000). Survey of specialist diabetes care services in the UK: Workforce issues, roles and responsibilities of diabetes specialist nurses. Journal of Diabetic Medicine.UK; ABCDVol.19, no.4: Page 27.
Berry T. & Grey M. (2004). Interventions (Nursing Interventions Classification) Compromised Family Coping for Pediatric. New York: Macmillan Publishers.
Joslin, P. E. (1999). The treatment of diabetes mellitus. New Jersey: Lea & Febiger,
Loveman, E. (2003). Specialist nurses in diabetes mellitus. London: John Wiley and Sons Ltd.
Morris, D. (2000). ABC of arterial and venous disease: Vascular complications of diabetes. Bradford: BMJ publishers.
Roger, S. (2000). Staged diabetes management: Improving diabetes care. Minneapolis; IDC Publishing.
Zuraikat, N. (2001). Registered nurses’ actual and perceived knowledge of diabetes mellitus. Sydney: McGraw Hill.