The mission of the North Shore-LIJ Diabetes Wellness Programs is to provide educational resources to those living with diabetes to help them manage their condition and maintain healthy lifestyles.

These programs support patients, families and health care providers by offering the latest educational resources while encouraging community involvement.

Diabetes self management education (DSME)

DSME explains how individuals can make the best choices about food, exercise and medicine. To help with this education, the Diabetes Wellness Programs will provide participants with information about:

  • Healthy eating
  • Exercising
  • Keeping track of glucose levels
  • Taking medicine
  • Problem solving
  • Healthy coping

About the program

The programs are accredited by the American Association of Diabetes Educators. Certified Diabetes Educators teach all classes. These educators are nurses, nurse practitioners, registered dieticians or pharmacists who have been specially trained to help people living with diabetes.

Individual and group appointments are available throughout Nassau, Suffolk, Queens and Manhattan. Participants may bring a support person when they attend a class.


Classes offered include:

Getting Started

A complete education program covering all areas of DSME. The initial class consists of four two-hour sessions, and is followed by one-hour quarterly sessions covering:

  • Healthy eating
  • Adding movement to your life
  • Getting the most out of your doctor's visits: Reducing risks
  • Stress management

The Refresher

  • For those who have had diabetes in the past and want an update

Gestational Diabetes Education Program

This program will focus on specific care of diabetes during pregnancy, for both the mother and the baby, including:

  • An explanation of what gestational diabetes is
  • How to check glucose levels
  • Tips on healthy eating
  • How to take medicine
  • What the participant needs to know after delivering a baby

Insulin Pump Education

  • For beginners: teaches new patients about insulin pump therapy
  • For advanced learners: provides additional education for those who have been using the insulin pump

Insulin Smart Start Program

This class provides patients with the support and resources they need to safely start outpatient insulin therapy. This class covers:

  • An overview of insulin and why it is needed
  • Insulin administration (vials, syringes and insulin pens)
  • Disposal of needles
  • Signs, symptoms and treatment of hypoglycemia
  • A brief overview of medical nutritional therapy and blood glucose monitoring

It is recommended that patients fill their insulin prescription prior to attending this class and bring their supplies with them. If they are unable to do this, participants should let the class educator know what type of insulin and the administration method they will be using.

Getting started

Interested participants should follow these important steps:

1.       Call their doctor and ask for a referral. A doctor should fill out this form and fax it to: 718-470-4031. Note: A referral is required to participate in the Diabetes Wellness Programs.

2.       For information about class locations and times, please call: 1-855-36-GOALS (1-855- 364-6257) or email diabeteswellness@nshs.edu

3.       Callers should have their insurance information ready when they call to register for classes.

Classes are available in English and Spanish. Free interpretation services are available and details are available when a participant calls to make an appointment. Special assistance is also available for people without health insurance.

All facilities are wheelchair accessible and offer services to support the visually and hearing impaired.


Most insurance plans cover the classes. Interested participants should call their insurance company to find out if the Diabetes Wellness Programs classes are covered under their insurance plan.

A special program is in place if a participant does not have insurance. For more information, call: 1-855-36-GOALS (1-855- 364-6257)