A study assessed the role of diabetes nurse practitioners (DiNPs) and their contribution to the quality of care of individuals with diabetes during the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, this analysis, published in the Journal of Nursing Scholarship, examined the benefits and barriers of using telemedicine for managing diabetes.
In this content analysis of interviews, participants were invited through the National DiNPs’ Forum. These semi-structured interviews were conducted with 24 licensed DiNPs who were involved in the clinical care of individuals with diabetes during the COVID-19 pandemic. All interviews were recorded and transcribed.
The analysis revealed five themes: Benefits and barriers of remote diabetes treatment; Teamwork and its implications to DiNPs; Technological challenges, resourcefulness, and creativity; Changed perception of DiNP roles; and Cultural diversity and improving communication skills. The interviews revealed the benefits of telemedicine included improved control, efficiency, convenience, and satisfaction, while the disadvantages of this method included the inability to provide optimal practical guidance on technical aspects of physical assessments and care.
“Telemedicine should become an integral part of diabetes management to enable access to populations who cannot come to the clinic. Patients should be guided on using telemedicine platforms,” the researchers concluded.
Keywords: COVID-19, diabetes management, nurse practitioner, qualitative study, telemedicine