Education & CE Opportunities

Guidance for Becoming a Diabetes Care and Education Specialist/CDE

How do I become a diabetes care and education specialist?

One must be a healthcare professional who has a defined role as a diabetes care and education specialist, not for those who may perform some diabetes related functions as part of or in the course of other usual and customary duties.

Practice as a diabetes care and education specialist means you are actively employed for compensation, providing a direct or indirect professional contribution to the care and self-management education of people with diabetes.

Diabetes care and education, also referred to as diabetes self-management education or diabetes self-management training, is performed by healthcare professionals who have appropriate credentials and experience consistent with the particular profession's scope of practice. Diabetes self-management education is defined as the interactive, collaborative, ongoing process involving the person with diabetes or prediabetes and/or the caregivers and the specialist(s). The process includes:

  • Assessment of the individual's specific education needs
  • Identification of the individual's specific diabetes self-management goals
  • Education and behavioral intervention directed toward helping the individual achieve identified self-management goals
  • Evaluation(s) of the individual's attainment of identified self-management goals
  • Proper documentation of all education encounters

Diabetes care and education specialists can be found in a variety of settings: hospitals, physician offices, clinics, home health, wellness programs, to name a few. They most often work within accredited or recognized diabetes education programs. This means that the diabetes care and education program has met requirements set forth by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and can bill for diabetes self-management training through two different codes: G0108 and G0109, which are for individual and group diabetes care and education.

View practice documents related to diabetes education.

After working in the field for a while, many diabetes educators choose to pursue the certified diabetes educator (CDE) credential. See below for information on becoming a CDE.

ADCES resources for people interested in learning the basics of diabetes care and education:

How do I become certified in diabetes care and education? 

The National Certification Board for Diabetes Educators announced in January 2020 that it was changing the name of the credential from Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) to Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist (CDCES). The transition will take place throughout 2020. 

The organization has also changed it's name to Certification Board for Diabetes Care and Education (CBDCE). That transition will also take place during 2020.

In order to become a CDE/CDCES one must first meet the eligibility requirements set forth by the NCBDE/CBDCE) The CDE credential is fully administered and maintained by this organization. ADCES does not have a role in the process, but does have products that assist in preparing for the CDE exam (see below for more details).

Learn more about the eligibility requirements and find a CDE/CDCES application on the NCBDE website.

ADCES CDE Exam Prep Resources

The following resources can help you prepare for the CDE exam:




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