Out of Control


That the largest-ever study of glucose control in U.S. hospitals found roughly 1 in 3 patients are hyperglycemic (<180 mg/dL) during their hospital stay is no surprise to hospitalist Cheryl O'Malley, MD, FACP, program director of internal medicine at the Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center, Phoenix.

The data (PDF), based on point-of-care bedside glucose tests at 575 hospitals, showed hyperglycemia in 32.2% of ICU patients and 32% in non-ICU patients. Dr. O'Malley says the findings are further evidence that HM leaders have a duty to focus on glycemic control because so many of their patients are hyperglycemic.

Dr. O'Malley does her part as a mentor for SHM's Glycemic Control Mentored Initiative (GCMI) program, which recently expanded to a second cohort of 96 sites. The mentoring program has branched out to include nurses, physician assistants, and even two leading endocrinologists as mentors: Emory University School of Medicine's Guillermo Umpierrez, MD, FACP, FACE, and HealthPartners' John MacIndoe, MD.

SHM also has launched a microsite, dubbed eQUIPS (Electronic Quality Improvement Programs), which gives HM groups not involved in the mentoring program access to data analysis, benchmarking tools, and other services.

Kendall M. Rogers, MD, CPE, FACP, SFHM, associate professor of medicine and hospital medicine division chief at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center's Department of Internal Medicine, says SHM has always wanted to broaden the program to as many hospitals and physicians as possible to battle glycemic-control issues. And bringing in nationally respected endocrinologists as mentors furthers the goal to build "teams of experts within local hospitals."

"Hospitalists, endocrinologists, and other specialists have to work together," Dr. O'Malley adds. "The volume of work is just too much for any one group to bear."

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