Local doctor receives grant to study and hopefully improve diabetic care

From aarp.net

LOGAN — Dr. Thomas Clark, a local physician, has recently been given a grant to pursue research into a study of transitional care for diabetics. He said it highlights a real problem.

“Like in diabetes, they transition from a pediatric endocrinologist to an adult endocrinologist (and) things fall through the cracks. But one of the biggest things that we see in all of medicine, but diabetes is probably the worst, is they come into the hospital on one group of medicines.

“They get changed to another while they’re in the hospital, and sometimes when they leave, they get on a whole other group of medications and the patient doesn’t know (and) the doctor doesn’t know. And there’s a lot of trouble in the transition,” he explained.

On KVNU’s For the People program last week, Dr. Clark said this results in a lot of necessary visits to urgent care or the E.R. and the re-hospitalization rates are quite high. He said about half of his practice involves treating diabetes, and while his research does not tie-in directly to high insulin costs, he notes it has been going up.

“It’s five-times (acceleration) in costs…even for the insulins that have been around for 20 years. There’s lots of theories, there’s theories of collusion and price fixing and there has been even some emails, I don’t know anything about insulin, but about big pharma from different companies (that) have said ‘if you raise your price I’ll raise ours’ and those emails have been exposed.”

He said he hopes to be conducting his research by the end of the year.

AUDIO: Dr. Thomas Clark talks diabetes research with FTP host Jason Williams


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