I was privileged enough to have the chance to interview Janet Howard-Ducsay RN, BSN, BA, CDE, from Redlands Community Hospital in Redlands, CA. Janet was kind enough to answer some diabetes related questions to help provide a better insight into management and support.
Start by telling us about yourself and what your interests are related to diabetes, or if you, yourself are affected by diabetes personally or through a family member?
I have been a Registered Nurse since 1977 with Critical Care and Emergency Room nursing and educator experience since then. I became a Certified Diabetes Educator in 2008 and provide inpatient and outpatient diabetes education at our local community hospital.
What is your area of expertise in Diabetes?
I provide Inpatient and Outpatient diabetes education and prevention mostly for adults in our community. The majority of my patients that I see are persons with Type 2 but I am seeing an uptick of persons with Type 1
Describe your typical work day and your patient interaction during the day.
My work day is in our community hospital seeing patients while they are inpatient or in the Emergency Room. Additionally, I see patients one on one in my office. I create and establish the standards and practice of the nursing staff, provide education in both lectures and e-learning to all staff and have created the Order sets that are available for our physician practice. I create a monthly newsletter for the staff and community.
Have you had any special recognition, rewards, or special projects related to diabetes or other things, that you have been involved in? Tell us about those.
I enjoy writing and create a monthly newsletter for the community. I have written timely articles for our local newspaper. I have published in Diabetes Self-Management Magazine. I am creating e-learning on Learn It Live.
If you could say one piece of advice to a newly diagnosed patient or family member what would that be?
Lean in to changes as you increase your knowledge about being a person with diabetes. Embracing the 7 lifestyle behaviors for self-management is an excellent way to include a personal successful plan for diabetes management.
Do you have an example of a situation where you went above and beyond for a patient or their family?
My approach to assisting a patient with educational needs is this:
Tell me where you are, tell me where you want to go and I’ll get you there.
So there are no boundaries I won’t explore for them.
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What made you decide to choose the career path of a CDE?
It became what I call a re-invention as I cultivated my nursing career. It complimented my passion for nursing
What is one area of diabetes management you feel is the most challenging?
Helping persons with diabetes supplies and cost of medications and managing their ever changing insurance provisions.
What would you say to someone struggling with coming to an acceptance about having this disease?
It is a grieving process. Unless you allow yourself to work through the steps of the grieving process you will continue to have a wall keeping you from acceptance which is on the other side.