Sheffield diabetes team scoops national award

Team from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals wins national award for significantly improving quality of care in newly diagnosed Type 1 diabetes patients

Carolin Taylor (Diabetes Specialist Nurse), Dr Paru King (QiC Judge) and Dr Jackie Elliott

A diabetes team from Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has won a top national award for making big improvements to the quality of care of patients newly diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.

The ‘Improving glycaemic outcomes in newly diagnosed Type 1 diabetes adults’ scooped the Patient Care Pathway Adult award at the Quality in Care (QiC) Diabetes 2016 National Awards after many more patients were able to reach recommended blood glucose levels set by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). The Quality in Care Awards recognise innovative practice in diabetes management, education and services for people with diabetes and/or their families.

The initiative – which was cited by judges as a 'great example of engagement' that 'should be distributed across the country' – led to more than twice the number of newly diagnosed Type 1 diabetes patients reaching vital NICE targets compared with those diagnosed in 2012 to 2013.

Through the programme, newly diagnosed Type 1 diabetes patients were given specific training and education about how to flexibly manage their blood glucose. As well as learning about the effect exercise and food intake can have on glucose levels, they were shown how to safely manage their condition without having to follow a restrictive two insulin injections a day regime, allowing them to inject insulin to suit their lifestyle needs rather than at predetermined time points.

'In 2014 only 23% of patients newly diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes were controlling their blood glucose levels to the standards recommended by NICE one year after diagnosis, so to now have 50% of patients reaching this target is fantastic,' said Dr Jackie Elliott, Senior Clinical Lecturer in Diabetes and Honorary Consultant for Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. 'This programme is all about educating Type 1 diabetes patients from the start, so that good self-management and control of blood glucose levels are part and parcel of their everyday lives.

'Staff and patient feedback has been highly positive, and winning this award recognises the huge team effort that required staff to rethink systems and processes to make a difference to the quality of people’s lives.'

The initiative was first developed in 2014 and is aligned with National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) evidence published in August 2015. It is used by practitioners as part of the national Dose Adjustment For Normal Eating (DAFNE) diabetes education programme – which was also developed by Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Photo: Carolin Taylor (Diabetes Specialist Nurse), Dr Paru King (QiC Judge) and Dr Jackie Elliott collect their award

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