An integrated care pathway for cancer patients with diabetes: A proposal from the Italian experience

      Abstract

      Diabetes and cancer frequently coexist in the same subject, often with relevant clinical effects on the management and prognosis of the comorbid patient. The existing guidelines, however, do not appropriately address many clinical issues in this setting. Although collaboration between diabetologists and oncologists should play an important role in achieving appropriate levels of care, close coordination or agreement between these specialists is seldom offered. There is an urgent need for greater interdisciplinary integration between all specialists involved in this setting, for a shared approach ensuring that organisational silos are overcome. To this end, the Italian Associations of Medical Diabetologists (AMD) and the Italian Association of Medical Oncology (AIOM) recently established a dedicated Working Group on ‘Diabetes and Cancer’. The working group outlined a diagnostic and therapeutic clinical pathway dedicated to hospitalised patients with diabetes and cancer. In this article, we describe the Italian proposal including some suggested measures to assess, monitor and improve blood glucose control in the hospital setting, to integrate different specialists from both areas, as well as to ensure discharge planning and continuity of care from the hospital to the territory.

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