A Pharmacy Student–Facilitated Interprofessional Diabetes Clinic With the Penobscot Nation
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A Pharmacy Student–Facilitated Interprofessional Diabetes Clinic With the Penobscot Nation

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    Prev Chronic Dis
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    American Indians/Alaska Natives have a greater increased risk for diabetes than non-Hispanic whites. Lifestyle interventions are effective in preventing and treating diabetes, and an interprofessional approach is important in diabetes management.

    Community Context

    The Penobscot Nation has a health center with a wide range of services. Our goal with the Nation was to 1) establish an interprofessional, student-facilitated diabetes clinic in the health center; 2) assess the clinic’s preliminary impact.


    Relationship building and problem solving was instrumental in working toward the first goal. A survey was developed to assess satisfaction with the clinic. The clinical outcomes, mean and median values of HbA1c, were calculated at baseline (spring 2013) and were used to establish 2 groups of patients: those with controlled levels (<7%) and those with uncontrolled levels (≥ 7%). HbA1c was reassessed in fall 2013. Changes in HbA1c were calculated and compared using the Wilcoxon signed-rank test.


    The student-facilitated, interprofessional diabetes clinic has operated for 2 years, and changes are under way. More than 90% of participants reported being well satisfied with the clinic in the first year. Among the group with uncontrolled HbA1c (n = 18), mean HbA1c values declined from 9.3% to 7.6% (P = .004). Among the group with controlled HbA1c (n = 30), 83% were controlled at follow-up.


    The Penobscot diabetes clinic is evolving to meet the needs of community members, and pharmacy students have an interprofessional practice site well suited for experiential learning.

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