May 17, 2013
Diabetes and Depression – CDE Style
At last, a certified diabetes educator that is willing to talk about depression. Although I am not sure I completely agree with everything she says, at least she has opened a dialog. Where it will go from here remains to be seen. Will the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE) make it a topic of interest? This could be interesting if they would.
I am admittedly tired of explaining to other people with diabetes why CDEs seem to close out sessions with diabetes patients when the word depression is mentioned or when CDEs are asked for help. The instance, what I talked about in a previous blog seems to hold true time after time. It is like most CDEs are afraid to talk about depression and don't want to be around people with any level of depression.
Talking about depression and obtaining help for people with depression is becoming more difficult as many programs are being cut by lack of funding and qualified people to handle depression. In my state, mental health facilities are less than one quarter of what they were 15 years ago and finding doctors willing to refer you to professionals capable of assisting people with depression is almost non-existent. Those that do have a practice are so busy they do not have time for new patients.
Most medical providers today just attempt to help by prescribing antidepressants for a period of time. Even with all the discussion about mental health care because of school shootings and obtaining guns has not been looked on with favor because there just is not provisions to handle this potential influx of patients. Most of the governors in the surrounding states have stated that this would be ideal, but with the lack of facilities and professionals to handle this, it is unrealistic to support mental health care for persons needing this.
That is the main reason for my surprise that a CDE would even blog about depression since her colleagues seem to walk – no, run away from people even mentioning the word depression. Clearly they lack the training to deal with depression. What stops them from talking to the patient's doctor about this still has me puzzled as this seems the least they should to do to assist the patient.
This behavior by CDEs says they don't know how to assess diabetes patients for depression and are not interested in helping people with depression. I can only hope that the dialog opened by one CDE does not die for fear of having to deal with diabetes patients and depression.