July Partner Spotlight
Jul 03, 2014
For primary care physician Dr. Kevin Peterson, the National Diabetes Education Program’s (NDEP) resources serve the dual purpose of helping him educate his patients and meeting health reform’s goal of patient-centered care.
And Peterson—who has worked with diabetes patients since 1991—says that’s an important message for other primary care providers, not just because these clinicians treat so many diabetes patients, but also because this patient population now has better access to information about how to manage their disease. By his estimate, there are about 220,000 primary care providers and only about 4,000 endocrinologists, and diabetes is one of the most common diseases that a primary care provider sees.
“NDEP has always been good at understanding the importance of both the patient and the extended health care team,” Peterson says. “I think that the importance of that extended team is only increasing and getting larger. As that happens, it’s essential for the care to remain patient-centered.”
Through the years, Peterson has used NDEP’s resources to develop a maintenance-of-certification module for the American Academy of Family Physicians. And currently he uses NDEP materials—particularly those translated into multiple languages—for the “After Your Visit” summary that he’s required to submit for the federal government’s electronic health records incentive program. He’s especially excited about the Practice Transformation group, which he sees as an opportunity to help primary care providers keep pace with the rapidly changing U.S. health care environment.
“The speed of transformation just continues to accelerate with the introduction of accountable care and the many different models that are being proposed for reimbursement,” Peterson says, adding that regardless of the political landscape, having health care providers share financial risk and understand who their patients are will serve as a support for diabetes and all chronic diseases. “The transformation of care will continue to happen. We will be focusing more on support of diabetes outside of the practice and providing people with the tools of self-management that we did in the olden days when we waited for them to show up outside our door.”