Diabetes requires high-quality clinical care delivered by appropriately trained personnel and effective self-management. It is vital for people with diabetes and those at risk of diabetes to have diabetes self-management education and on-going support. However, there is currently a worldwide shortage of health workers and therefore one of IDF’s priorities is to support specialist training and best practice in diabetes education. The IDF Consultative Section on Diabetes Education (DECS) produces education materials, conducts training courses, and organizes workshops for health professionals.
In 2010 DECS launched the Diabetes Education Network for Health Professionals (D-NET), the first international on-line forum to enhance diabetes education and management. It is a place for health professionals to connect, find support, share best practices and discover learning opportunities.
Participants in D-NET can read and discuss recent postings on issues in diabetes education and management, engage with international experts in scheduled guided discussions, post articles or resources and start discussions of their own. They share experiences with professionals from all over the globe and gain valuable comparative knowledge on the challenges and successes in working in diabetes education.
D-NET forums are currently available in English and Spanish with plans to expand to more languages. Since its launch, D-NET has attracted over 1,200 members and is still growing. Activity in D-NET continues to grow as new members sign up and new discussions from around the globe are started.