Your health care team
Many people can be part of your health care team to help you live well with diabetes.
Your team can be made up of health professionals, as well as your family and friends. But the most important member of your team is you. You are the one making those daily decisions about your diabetes and the more you know, the easier it will be to manage your diabetes.
There is a range of NDSS education and support programs available to help you understand and manage your diabetes. Read more about our support programs.
Why do I need a health care team?
If you are feeling overwhelmed by all the information you have received, your health care team can help. Different members of your team will take you through the various aspects of your diabetes management plan, step by step, so do make an appointment right away.
It’s also good to talk with your family, friends and others who may be living with diabetes. Remember that every person’s diabetes is different, and what suits someone else may not suit you.
Your health team and how they can help
Take a look at the people you may wish to have in your health care team and how they can help below.
- Your doctor is the central health team member in checking your diabetes and helping you to manage it.
- A diabetes educator works with you to help you understand and manage your diabetes.
- A dietitian helps you to understand how food affects your blood glucose levels (BGLs). They will help you work out a healthy eating plan.
- An endocrinologist is a medical specialist who can provide expert advice on how to manage your diabetes. If you have type 2 diabetes, you may not need an endocrinologist straight away.
- A podiatrist can help you keep your feet healthy.
- An ophthalmologist is an eye specialist who monitors your eyes for any changes and arranges treatment if needed.
- An optometrist prescribes glasses but can also check for eye problems.
- A pharmacist at your local community pharmacy (an NDSS Access Point) can advise how to get the best benefit from your medication and discuss the side effects. Your doctor can ask for a pharmacist to do a medication review with you.
- Your dentist needs to know you have diabetes to help you reduce your risk of dental problems.
- A counsellor, psychologist, psychiatrist or social worker can help if you are feeling stressed or finding it hard to deal with your diabetes.
- An exercise physiologist or physiotherapist can help work out the best exercise plan for you.
What are diabetes centres?
Diabetes centres provide you with specialised advice and can help you manage your diabetes. Talk to your doctor about arranging a referral to a diabetes centre near you. Centres are located in public hospitals, some private hospitals and some community health centres.
Older people with diabetes
As you get older you may have more health issues to deal with. This booklet provides information to help you work with your health care team and live well with diabetes. It is not always easy to find your way around the health system. You need to work out who can help you with health issues and maintaining your well-being.
How are you going with your diabetes health checks?
It is essential to do an annual cycle of care to find any health problems early. Without regular checks, diabetes can lead to health problems that can affect your whole body, including your kidneys, eyes, feet, nerves and heart. Ask your doctor for the timing of health checks and targets that meet your individual health needs.
Your health care team during pregnancy
There are specialised services to support you both when planning a pregnancy and during pregnancy.
Read more about Your pregnancy health care team, for women with type 1 diabetes.
Read more about Your pregnancy health care team, for women with type 2 diabetes.