November 8th 2004
As healthcare professionals, we are all painfully aware of the increase in the incidence of diabetes in our nation. We are also aware that there are many people in our midst who don't realize they have diabetes. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) estimates that the disease affects over 18 million Americans, with 5.2 million of those cases going undetected. As the most visible and accessible health provider in the community, the pharmacist has a unique opportunity to help stanch the spread of diabetes in our country. Therefore, our objective is to have community pharmacies increase their frequency of random glucose screenings in order to identify patients who are at elevated risk for diabetes or may have the disease and not know it. Pharmacists should also be prepared to provide education not only on the treatment but also the prevention of diabetes.