Diabetes Education

When you have diabetes, life can seem difficult. When patients are faced with diabetes, managing medications, blood glucose testing, and maintaining a good diet can be a challenge without the proper support. The diabetes education program provided by Henry County Medical Center’s Department for Diabetes Education can provide a framework for patients and their families to learn to live well with diabetes.

We proudly offer an educational program recognized by the American Association of Diabetes Educators’ Diabetes Education Accreditation Program which is designed for children, adolescents, adults, and seniors who want to learn more about managing their diabetes.

The Diabetes Self-Management Education Program

HCMC offers a complete program for patients with Type 1 and 2 diabetes. Our interdisciplinary team of educators includes a Registered Dietitian, Kim Dempsey, MS, RD, LDN, and a Pharmacist, Paula C. Bell, Pharm D, BCPS. As members of your healthcare team, the diabetes educators make managing your diabetes easier. They work with you to develop a plan to stay healthy, and give you the tools and ongoing support to make that plan a regular part of your life. Our program has seven key areas of focus. A diabetes educator can help you understand the causes and disease process of diabetes, then set priorities and coach you on each of these areas.

The Diabetes Self-Management Education Program is accredited by the Diabetes Education Accreditation Program as meeting the national standards for diabetes education and support.  All education is provided by a registered nurse who is certified in diabetes education with 11+ years of diabetes management experience as well as a registered dietitian who is also very experienced in the diabetes arena. Our Diabetes Education program is designed to meet individualized needs.

Our group education program, facilitated by our CDE, consists of three classes meeting weekly for one month. The classes are provided as a service by Henry County Medical Center and are designed to, through lively group interaction, encourage people to become active participants/learners, and enable them to become more engaged in managing their diabetes. Physician referrals are not required for the group classes.

For those requiring more individualized counseling for one or all areas of diabetes care, services are provided in a setting that allows one-on-one interaction with the Certified Diabetes Educator. This is a team approach between the patient, the CDE and the physician, to develop an individualized plan of care to help the patient achieve control. A physician referral is required.

Discuss attending the program with your doctor. Contact the diabetes educator at 731-644-8376 for registration and class schedules.

You can be part of the movement to Stop Diabetes® and get your free Diabetes Risk Test (English or Spanish) by visiting them on Facebook or go to stopdiabetes.com or call 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383). The Diabetes Risk Test is available year-round.

Patients and families will learn more about:

  • Healthy Eating
  • Being Active
  • Monitoring
  • Taking Medications
  • Problem Solving
  • Reducing risks
  • Healthy Coping

Our patients that participate in education and support programs have been able to achieve and maintain many successful outcomes. Patients are able to lower their HbA1c results, achieve desirable cholesterol levels, lose weight, begin exercise routines and many more positive results.

You can help us better serve you by coming to your visits with a complete list of medications, including dosages, your most recent laboratory data, and at least one week of blood sugar readings, if available.


Referrals are necessary to enroll in the program and must be provided by a licensed practitioner, such as your primary care provider or specialist. The signed referral form can be faxed to 731-644-8488. A provider can also make a referral electronically through the Order Facilitator system. One of the educators who will be working with you will call to schedule an appointment.

Consultations and Costs

Diabetes self-management education (DSME) programs are covered by most insurance groups including Medicare. Please confirm with your insurance provider to verify your benefits before scheduling an appointment.

Contact Information

To learn more about our services, the DSME team can be reached by calling (731)644-8575 for Kim Dempsey, MS, RD, LDN or (731)644-8591 for Paula C. Bell, Pharm D, BCPS.