The Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN) has just released the evidence-based guideline “Nursing Care of the Woman with Diabetes in Pregnancy.” It provides comprehensive recommendations for nurses who care for women with Types 1 and 2 diabetes and gestational diabetes (A1 or A2), during pregnancy, labor and postpartum, and their babies. Included are recommendations for blood glucose targets and monitoring in pregnancy, intravenous insulin administration during labor, and neonatal hypoglycemia and feeding guidelines. The guideline is valuable for nurses, midwives, and nurse-practitioners working in both outpatient and inpatient settings. Recommendations for women with or at risk for diabetes before and between pregnancy are also addressed, including guidelines for women who have had bariatric surgery. The introduction to the guideline covers prediabetes, the physiology of glucose metabolism in pregnancy, and summarizes key differences in national recommendations for diagnosing diabetes in pregnancy.
Perinatal diabetes nurse educator, researcher, and former DCC Board Member Maribeth Inturrisi, RN, MS, CNS, CDE, led the science team of nurses who developed the guideline. Recommendations are organized to assist nurses to empower women to take control of their diabetes, addressing healthy eating and activity, effectively monitoring blood sugar and managing medications, problem solving and reducing risks and healthy coping. These seven self-care behaviors have been outlined by the American Association of Diabetes Educators to give measurable outcomes of diabetes education. Visit AWHONN’s website for more information on how to access “Nursing Care of the Woman with Diabetes in Pregnancy.”