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Introducing Western Zone’s Lisa deMolitor RD CDE, 2023 winner of Diabetes Canada Diabetes Educator of the Year Award

A woman with long brown hair with bangs is standing in front of a green leafy bush wearing a black tank top and smiling into the camera.

Diabetes Canada’s Diabetes Educator of the Year award is nationally recognized and celebrates healthcare professionals who have made special contributions to the diabetes space through dedication, sensitivity and innovation. Nova Scotia has Certified Diabetes Educators across the province who continually strive to provide high-quality and respectful care. This past fall, one of our staff was awarded the title 2023 Diabetes Educator of the Year. Lisa deMolitor is a dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator in the Annapolis Valley. She is a member of a wonderful multidisciplinary team caring for people living with diabetes throughout the lifespan.  

DeMolitor has an undergrad at Acadia University and a Master of Public Health from University of Waterloo. She has enjoyed working in rural, remote areas in British Columbia and currently lives in Nova Scotia. In her spare time, she enjoys gardening, paddling and cycling with her family.  

Through volunteerism, advocacy work and professional leadership, deMolitor has strived to improve the lives of those living with diabetes. To these ends, she has worked with many organizations such as Diabetes Canada D-Camps, Diabetes Canada Professional Conference (and other Diabetes Canada events), Connected in Motion and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.  

As a clinician in the diabetes space, deMolitor recognizes that clinical skills are important, but they aren’t enough on their own.  

“We need to recognize the importance of patient-centered care and what that truly means. Folks who live with diabetes have so much knowledge and expertise already. It’s important to honour that, and their goals, by putting as much power as possible in their hands through shared decision-making, respectful care and the technology/medicine they need.”  

deMolitor recommended practitioners read the Diabetes Canada Language Matters position statement.

“There is a lot of misinformation about diabetes. This leads to shame, blame and stigma. This, in turn, affects those living with diabetes on many levels. We need to do better to raise awareness and recognize the impact of our language on our thoughts and actions.”

deMolitor also deeply appreciates how other external factors, such as food and home security, critically impact the quality of life for people living with diabetes.  

“It is assumed that individuals just need more education; and that knowledge alone will improve outcomes, but in fact, we need to address social determinants of health. Many folks have wonderful insight on what they need to live well, but do not have access to it. We need to address these gaps in our systems that are creating barriers to better health.”

Thanks to the support of incredible healthcare professionals like deMolitor, on February 28, 2024, the Government of Nova Scotia announced funding for sensor-based glucose monitoring supplies and an expansion to the Nova Scotia Insulin Pump Program.

The government will fund sensor-based glucose monitoring supplies through a new income-based program and expand the Nova Scotia Insulin Pump Program by removing the age cap. The program, which helps with the costs of insulin pumps and supplies, is currently only available to Nova Scotians under the age of 26.

“This is such a positive step in the right direction. It will make a significant impact on the lives of many Nova Scotians living with diabetes. Previously, some folks had to choose between a career aligned with their passions or one that provided a medical plan. Others had to choose between having a life-changing diabetes device or groceries.”

deMolitor is joined by her fellow diabetes educators in the effort to meet the needs of Nova Scotians living with diabetes. If you or your loved ones would like more information about diabetes and diabetes advocacy, some helpful resources include: 

A truly remarkable person, clearly well deserving of Diabetes Canada’s 2023 Diabetes Educator of the Year Award. Congratulations, Lisa! 

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