Given the growing prevalence and accelerating cost of diabetes, there is an urgent need to expand strategies in health care that improve access and outcomes and reduce the financial and human burden of the disease. Diabetes care and education specialists (DCESs) are well positioned to assist health care systems with delivery models that enhance diabetes care through evidence-based standards and quality improvement strategies. DCESs have increased opportunities to apply their competencies in primary, specialty, hospital, and acute care settings; accountable care organizations; community settings; research; and academia. Two national certification programs provide an evidence-based foundation for quality in the specialty, with updated competencies guiding practice. This article serves as a call to action for health care systems to integrate specialists in diabetes care and education into diabetes care delivery models and raise awareness of the positive impact these professionals have on the lives of people with diabetes.
This article contains supplementary material online at https://doi.org/10.2337/figshare.19322852