Diabetes care and services can be considered a business - one that is in a state of flux due to health care changes, the political landscape, and the economy. Many hospitals are cutting programs and resources because the current model for reimbursement does not cover overhead costs, and health care financial administrators no longer tolerate budgets with a negative bottom line.
We were asked by the editors of On The Cutting Edge, a publication of the Diabetes Care and Education Dietetic Practice Group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, to contribute an article for to be published in an issue focused on diabetes as a business, with dietitians and diabetes educators as the reading audience.
This piece describes the successful business model that ABC has developed over the past several years and discusses the successes and challenges of running sustainable Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support (DSME/S) programs at scale. We are excited to share our approach to providing this critical service to patients and to demonstrate that programs such as ours can be budget-neutral or better.
We have received lots of positive feedback from clinicians who read the article, with comments that the challenges we describe resonate all too well with them in their current hospital or health system roles. Many said they were encouraged to read that we demonstrate a successful way to continue servicing patients while cutting costs and increasing revenue so that programs can be sustainable for the long-term.