What to Expect if You are Hospitalized With Diabetes During This Time of COVID-19

Author: Braden Diabetes Center
What to Expect if You are Hospitalized With Diabetes During This Time of COVID-19

We know that being admitted to the hospital during this difficult time can feel overwhelming. Blood sugar levels can become elevated during an illness. Rest assured our team is here to provide you with the support and care needed to ensure that your diabetes is expertly attended to during your hospitalization.

The Glucose Management Team (GMT) will assist your doctors and other care team members with your diabetes care needs. The team can be reached Monday – Friday from 8 am to 4:30 pm. Your primary nurse and Hospitalist (hospital-based physician) will also be available to monitor your diabetes.

If you need diabetes education, our GMT can help. This can be completed in person, through the telephone, or virtually via computer or other mobile device. Phone consultations and/or virtual education would be used if a patient has diabetes and the COVID-19 virus.

If you are on oral medications when you come to the hospital, most likely, these will be discontinued during your stay. The best way to manage your blood sugar during hospitalization is with insulin. This does not necessarily mean you will need insulin when you are discharged from the hospital. Most people can resume their oral medications after returning home.

Your primary nurse will be monitoring your blood sugar before meals and at bedtime. Insulin will be given by injection, depending on your results.

The physicians and Glucose Management Team will be checking on your blood sugars to help keep them in a healthful target range.

When you are discharged from the hospital, you will receive several resources, including our “Keys to Control” book. The GMT can also provide you with a blood glucose meter and give you instructions on how to monitor your blood sugar. The team will work together with hospital staff to assure that you have the supplies and information you need for a safe discharge.

You will also be referred to our outpatient diabetes management program at the Braden Diabetes Center, where comprehensive diabetes education is available to you – now virtually through our telehealth tools.