Association of Diabetes Care & Education Specialists



Reaching Out for Better Health: A Community-based Diabetes Education Program

Diabetes self-management education and support (DSMES) administer by a diabetes care and education specialist is a key step in improving health outcomes and quality of life for those affected by the disease. Diabetes care and education specialists help people with diabetes and those at risk of developing diabetes gain the knowledge, problem-solving, and coping skills they need to self-manage their disease. Unfortunately, there are numerous barriers to DSMES such as a lack of community awareness, gaps in referrals, as well as logistical, social, and emotional factors that can affect the person with diabetes’ ability to access programs provided in clinical settings. Local DSMES programs rarely have the resources to effectively reach out to communities and address these barriers.

The goal of Reaching Out for Better Health: A Community-based Diabetes Education Program is to address these barriers through a one-year funding opportunity to develop and implement projects that target vulnerable and underserved populations. Eligible projects must meet two goals:

  1. Identify and address the access barriers to DSMES and increase program participation by developing and delivering community-specific programs.
  2. Achieve improved, positive, measurable behavioral and clinical changes among previously vulnerable and underserved people with diabetes participating in DSMES.

2019 Projects


Targeting Underserved Populations in Southeastern Kentucky

Access to quality accredited/recognized DSMES services in Kentucky is challenging, especially in rural areas of Appalachia. Through the Reaching Out for Better Health funding opportunity, the Kentucky Department of Health is exploring the use of telehealth technology to expand access to DSMES in an underserved area of southeastern Kentucky. 

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Delivering DSMES in a Faith-Based Setting

Through a train-the-trainer format, diabetes educators in the South and Central Bronx, NY are working with community leaders to create sustainable outcomes through faith-based partnerships. The project will provide DSMES services to a tight-knit Muslim community via a local mosque with the hopes of expanding to other faith-based organizations in the future.

Idaho Rural

Overcoming Access Barriers in Rural Idaho

Communities in rural Idaho face many barriers to DSMES access including long distances to diabetes management resources, lack of insurance coverage and language and cultural differences. Southwest District Health is exploring sustainable ways to reach these populations, working with a variety of stakeholders to address provider and community awareness of available programs.

Support the ADCES Education and Research Foundation

Help us support more programs like these, to increase the reach and impact of DSMES. 


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