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Living with diabetes during a pandemic

Last Modified: 4/10/2020

diabetes preparedness

This post was written by Susan Bruick, RN, MSN, CDE, diabetes clinician, and Rachel Gabet RN, BSN, LDE, diabetes clinician, Parkview Health.

In light of the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, it’s imperative to recognize that living with diabetes demands additional preparedness. Below you will find helpful tips and professional advice to keep you healthy during the pandemic. Any disruption in a diabetes treatment plan can be detrimental to your health, so it’s important to review these guidelines and avoid any complications.

Diabetes Management Tips

Here are a few tips to help you prepare for uncertain times and possible emergencies:

  • Make a list of all your current medications.
  • Be sure to obtain, at least, a 30-day supply of your current medications
  • Always take your medication as prescribed. Do not skip or hoard your prescriptions.
  • Make a list of your current primary care providers, specialists and pharmacies. Be sure to include telephone numbers for all of them.
  • Wear a medical alert ID necklace or bracelet, if you have one.
  • Be sure you have, at least, a 30-day supply of blood glucose test strips.
  • Don’t forget backup batteries for any glucose meters.
  • Be sure to have a backup plan for any diabetes technology devices, plus extra supplies.
  • If you wear a pump, bring extra supplies just in case you need to switch to daily injections.
  • Purchase syringes, glucose meters and testing supplies. You should be able to find these at most retail pharmacies.
  • Be sure to include a simple source of a non-perishable carbohydrate source to treat hypoglycemia. Glucose gel or tablets are good choices.
  • Also include an Emergency Glucagon/Baqsimi kit for severe hypoglycemia. This must be prescribed by your physician.

Parkview Health diabetes educators are continuing to work remotely during this time. If you need to speak to a specific educator, regardless of Parkview facility, please call 260-373-4280. Your message will be directed to the educator you need to speak to or the educator for the hospital location closest to you.

For additional information and tips on how to create a “diabetes kit”, please utilize the helpful resources below:

My diabetes emergency plan

Diabetes Disaster Response Coalition

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