October 25, 2015

Surprise Request from Tim

Tim asked for a few of us to meet with him on Saturday. We were concerned as this is unusual for him to ask a few to meet. When we were all together at his residence, Tim started by thanking us and stating that he had never planned this, as he had never had a reason to be so negative.

Tim pointed at me and said back when I had told him that I would walk out of a meeting if he ever invited a certified diabetes educator (CDE) to address the group, he thought I was not serious. He continued that now he knew why and would never invite a CDE to speak to the group. Allen asked him what had happened.

Tim stated that the medical insurance he carried had put him on a program where he needed to meet with a CDE for an hour each year and a registered dietitian (RD) for two hours each year. He had agreed to meet with a CDE, but had discouraged any contact with a RD and asked why not a nutritionist that he was meeting with for an hour each year. They finally allowed this but said it needed to be for two hours, but still felt it should be with the nutritionist they choose. This was still being negotiated, and he would keep us posted.

Barry said that the session with the CDE must not have gone well and I said it must have been with a person with dual titles (RD and CDE). Tim said dual titles and most of the hour was about carbohydrates and no diabetes education. Before you ask, I have been in contact with the insurance carrier and even they were surprised at the lack of diabetes education. Tim continued that they were not aware of the dual titles and he answered many questions about what was covered. He said that he has faxed them a copy of her business card and a formal complaint that when he is in a meeting for diabetes education, he did not consider nutrition only as education on diabetes.

I stated this is a common problem with the dual titles and I suggest you send out an email about this suggesting that people refuse diabetes education from people with dual titles unless it does not include RD or RDN (registered dietitian nutritionist). Allen said this may have been happening for many people that don't know the difference and they have been getting away with doing that. Allen asked me what I was going to do about my cousin Beverly when she became a CDE.

I said this should not be a problem as her dual titles will be RN (registered nurse) and CDE and she will be teaching diabetes education from a nurse perspective and not a dietitian. In addition, we have resolved our issues pertaining to CDE status and with her husband having type 2 diabetes, she knows how important good diabetes education is and needs to be.

Jason asked if most of Tim's session had been on how many grams of carbohydrates to eat and how important low fat was to his health. Tim grimaced and said that was the most of it and how to prepare meals to get the correct number of carbohydrates in each meal.

Barry stated that most dietitians only have a bachelor's degree, with Allison having a master's degree and Suzanne having a PhD, we are well informed, and they will work with us for good nutrition instead of promoting carbohydrates on top of carbohydrates. Jason added that they know good nutrition and teach this. They do not need to follow what the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics promotes and are not shills for Big Food.

I said that most insurance companies do not accurately tell us what was billed and therefore we have no transparency in what was billed for us to dispute any billing. This should be done for all billings by our insurance before anything is paid and especially for diabetes education and nutrition. If this were standard, the dual titles would have to do things correctly. Plus, this would prevent double billings for both education and nutrition when it was to be for one only.

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