National Standards for DSMES


Accreditation and recognition processes help ensure that services offer quality education and make the services eligible for reimbursement from Medicare, many private health plans, and some state Medicaid agencies.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has authorized the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the Association of Diabetes Care & Education Specialists (ADCES) to determine whether DSMES services meet required standards. Although ADA uses the term “recognition” and ADCES uses the term “accreditation,” the two terms involve the same processes. Both organizations rely on the latest edition of the National Standards for Diabetes Self-Management Education and Support to evaluate DSMES services.

This section of the toolkit focuses on the 2022 National Standards and provides tools and resources to help services wanting to put the standards into use.

This toolkit provides resources and tools for each of the six 2022 standards. For general information about ADCES and ADA interpretations of the standards, check out the resources below.

The DSMES team will seek leadership support for implementation and sustainability of DSMES services. The sponsor organization will recognize and support quality DSMES services as an integral component of diabetes care. Sponsor organizations will provide guidance and support for DSMES services to facilitate alignment with organizational resources and the needs of the community being served.

Tools to Satisfy Standard 1


Sample Letter of Administrative Support

The DSMES service will evaluate its chosen population to determine, develop, and enhance the resources, design, and delivery methods that align with the population’s needs and preferences.

Tools to Satisfy Standard 2


Sample Advisory Meeting Report

All members of a DSMES team will uphold the National Standards and implement collaborative DSMES services, including evidence-based service design, delivery, evaluation, and continuous quality improvement. At least one team member will be identified as the DSMES quality coordinator and will oversee effective implementation, evaluation, tracking, and reporting of DSMES service outcomes.

Tools to Satisfy Standard 3


Community Health Workers’ Role in DSMES and Prediabetes: ADCES Practice Paper

Program Coordinator/Quality Specialist Job Description


Diabetes Community Care Coordinators (DCCC) Training Tracker

DSMES Service Team Member and Staff Type 

DSMES Team List and Tracker 

Out-of-Scope Practice Policy

Quality Coordinator Job Description

Quality Coordinator Résumé Template

DSMES services will use a curriculum to guide evidence-based content and delivery; to ensure consistency of teaching concepts, methods, and strategies within the team; and to serve as a resource for the team. DSMES teams will have knowledge of and be responsive to emerging evidence, advances in education strategies, pharmacotherapeutics, technology-enabled treatment, local and online peer support, psychosocial resources, and delivery strategies relevant to the population they serve.

Tools to Support Standard 4


Delivery and Design of DSMES Services

Delivery and Design of DSMES Services: Annual Review Template

Person-centered DSMES is a recurring process over the life span for people with diabetes. Each person’s DSMES plan will be unique and based on the person’s concerns, needs, and priorities collaboratively determined as part of a DSMES assessment. The DSMES team will monitor and communicate the outcomes of the DSMES services to the diabetes care team, the referring physician or other qualified health care professional, or both.

Tools to Support Standard 5


Chart Audit Tool

DSMES Assessment Template​

DSMES Intervention Tracking Form​

Sample Referral Form


Communication to HCP​

Participant Record

Pediatric Assessment Form​

Sample Participant DSMES Assessment Data Collection and Review Policy

DSMES services will have ongoing, continuous quality improvement (CQI) strategies in place that measure the impact of the DSMES services. Systematic evaluation of process and outcome data will be conducted to identify areas for improvement and guide services optimization or redesign.

Tools to Support Standard 6

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Plan Do Study Act (PDSA) Tool