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Diabetes Standards of Care & Clinical Practice Resources

Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support

Diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) is an integral part of diabetes care to help patients achieve glycemic control and successful outcomes. DSMES provides knowledge and builds skills and abilities needed for effective self-care through informed decision making, problem solving, and collaboration with the health care team. The goal of DSMES is to improve clinical outcomes, health status, and quality of life for people with diabetes. Ongoing self-management support from the diabetes care team helps individuals sustain behavioral changes as they confront challenges due to aging, lifestyle changes, and progression of the disease process.

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Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support Sections

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Clinical Practice Recommendations

Recommendations for Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support

  • Ensure that every person with diabetes receives individualized DSMES at diagnosis and as needed thereafter to achieve treatment goals:

DSMES services may be offered through a formal education program or through brief encounters that focus on the individual needs of the patient and/or family member/caregiver. The diabetes care team and the patient use the DSMES process to assess needs, set self-management goals, develop an action plan, and foster active participation in health care decisions. DSMES is a Medicare-reimbursable service when provided by an accredited program. DSMES accredited programs are available in many American Indian and Alaska Native communities.

Clinician and Educator Resources

Food Insecurity Assessment Tool and Resource List [PDF – 153 KB]

Online Catalog: Free Patient/Client Resources

IHS Division of Diabetes Treatment and Prevention


American Diabetes Association Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes - 2018 Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov

Diabetes Care 2018 Jan; 41 (Supplement 1)

Diabetes Self-management Education and Support in Type 2 Diabetes: A Joint Position Statement of the American Diabetes Association, the American Association of Diabetes Educators, and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov [PDF]

Diabetes Care 2015 Jul; 38(7): 1372-1382. doi: 10.2337/dc15-0730

DSMES Joint Position Statement Toolkit

American Association of Diabetes Educators

2017 National Standards for Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov [PDF]

Diabetes Care 2017 Oct. doi: 10.2337/DCI17-0025


National Certification Board for Diabetes Educators: Certification Information Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov

National Certification Board for Diabetes Educators

National Diabetes Education Program: Health Care Professionals Exit Disclaimer: You Are Leaving www.ihs.gov

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases


Diabetes Education Recognition Programs