Role of Nursing in the Continuum of Inpatient Diabetes Care

Key Points

  • Nurses are essential—and central—to successful implementation of protocols, order sets, glucose monitoring, and educational programs to support improved glycemic control.

  • Because nurses oversee inpatient care on a 24-hour basis (regardless of the nursing system structure), nurses have opportunities to coordinate care of patients with hyperglycemia.

  • The individual nurses who will be most involved in implementing these systems should also be involved in planning, design, and evaluation of any new method for delivery of care.

  • Because each hospital is unique, all departments should be represented in designing an approach that will provide safe, quality care for inpatients with hyperglycemia.

  • Nursing in-service training, especially with regard to insulin therapy, should be both adequate and ongoing to ensure the needs of inpatients with hyperglycemia are met.

  • Diabetes educators and nursing staff should collaborate in the provision of basic “survival skills” when needed to allow for a safe discharge.

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