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International Standards for Diabetes Education

The International Standards for Diabetes Education is a publication of the IDF Consultative Section on Diabetes Education (DECS). It represents a revision of the International Consensus Standards of Practice for Diabetes Education published by DECS in 1997.

This revision has been based not only on other published standards but also on comments and feedback from diabetes educators working in various settings in many parts of the world. Every attempt has been made to set standards that are seen to be reasonable and achievable not only to those in developed countries, but perhaps more importantly to those who are in the process of building diabetes education programmes in less developed countries. As the incidence of diabetes increases worldwide, we must look for new ways to provide education. Diabetes education will be provided by healthcare professionals and non professionals.

These Standards provide a basis on which to develop programmes. It is not expected that all diabetes services will meet all the standards outlined in the document, but it is hoped that all services will be in the process of working towards implementing them. The process of diabetes education is dynamic and this document will be revised again in several years. Your comments on these Standards and how useful they have or have not been would be much appreciated.

Anne Belton, Editor-in-Chief


Member, International Diabetes Federation Consultative Section on Diabetes Education

As the growing epidemic of diabetes impacts globally, the requirement for people with diabetes to become more involved in self-management will increase in importance. This can only be achieved by high standards of therapeutic patient education delivered by skilled practitioners. Serving as a basis for the development of quality diabetes education services, this document will guide the health care provider in such areas as leadership, communication, documentation, the need for ongoing professional education, and physical requirements to be able to provide services, evaluation and research. The standards outlined in this document are comprehensive and will serve as benchmarks against which the quality of care delivered by organizations and individual diabetes educators can be evaluated.

I am delighted with this revision of the International Standards for Diabetes Education and believe it will prove to be a very valuable tool to assist health care providers worldwide in establishing, evaluating and improving their diabetes education services.

Source: International Diabetes Federation