Team Care

What is a diabetes team and how will they help me?

Having diabetes means that you need to understand how food, exercise, stress and medication affect your blood sugars. This is why the diabetes team is made up of many health care professionals such as doctors, clinical nurses, research nurses and dietitians. The team's role is to help you learn the skills necessary to manage your diabetes. This may involve monitoring your blood sugars at home and keeping food records.

The common goal we all share is to help you enjoy a good quality of life while living with diabetes! This can be done by helping you to maintain your blood sugars in a healthy range and regularly checking for the possible development of diabetes complications.

At a doctor's visit you may have:

  • the accuracy of your own meter checked if you test your blood sugars at home
  • a blood test called a Hemoglobin A1c. This will show what your blood sugar control has been over the last 2-3 months
  • your feet checked for cuts, blisters, callouses, deformities, feeling and circulation

Yearly you may have:

  • an appointment with the eye doctor
  • urine tests to check kidney function
  • other blood tests for cholesterol levels, thyroid function etc.

The LSCD offers a wide variety of services, including diabetes education for people who have been admitted to hospital or are attending the diabetes clinic. We have also developed educational material for both patients and educators. Many research activities are being carried out on an ongoing basis and patients are welcome to participate.

The LSCD also has a special program for diabetes and pregnancy. This service is available to women who have diabetes and are considering pregnancy and for those who develop diabetes during the course of their pregnancy (gestational diabetes).

There are strong links between MSH and the community. For instance, MSH is part of the Tri-Hospital Diabetes Education Center (TRIDEC). This program offers diabetes group education programs at Women's College Hospital and is available to all patients. Please tell your practitioner if you are interested in attending. Depending on your needs, you may also be referred to other health care providers such as chiropodists (foot specialists), cardiologists (heart doctors), ophthalmologists (eye doctors), nephrologists (kidney doctors) and physio or occupational therapists.

Your family doctor (or another specialist) has made a referral for you to attend this clinic. Information important to your care will be shared with us by your doctor before you come for your appointment. Because we work as a team at the LSCD, it is important for you to know that information about you will be shared with other team members here on the unit. At all times, your privacy and confidentiality is maintained. Information is shared on a 'need to know' basis only.