Meet the judges

The panel of judges comprises recognised academics, clinicians, patient bloggers, nurses and commissioners working in diabetes.

The judging chairs are Simon O’Neill , Director of Health Intelligence and Professional Liaison, Diabetes UK, Dr Paru King, Consultant Physician, Derby Hospitals and Alison Barnes, Research Associate (dietitian) / Diabetes Specialist Dietitian at Newcastle University/Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Simon qualified from St Thomas’ Hospital, London as a registered nurse in 1989 and specialised in paediatrics at Guy’s Hospital in 1991. Following several years working in both general and renal paediatrics, he moved to Diabetes UK in 1995 as a nurse care adviser.

Twenty three years later he is still there, although now as Director of Health Intelligence and Professional Liaison. As Director he is responsible for ensuring Diabetes UK produces accurate and up-to-date information and advice on all aspects of diabetes care, based on the latest evidence. Working closely with healthcare professional colleagues, he also advises on the charity’s policies and positions.

He has had type 1 diabetes for 27 years.

Paru has been a Consultant in Diabetes and Endocrinology in Derby since 2000. Her clinical interests include diabetes and pregnancy and also integrated care. She is the physician lead for the diabetes and obstetrics service, and has clinically led and project managed the award winning PROCEED project, the first integrated service for preconception care.

In 2018, her team was selected as one of 20 quality improvements sites, to further improve preconception care.  She started the National Diabetes and Pregnancy Conference, and has supported its growth into a major annual conference.  In addition, she has been the clinical lead for integrated care in Derby City since 2011, and Derby’s service model has gained national recognition.

Since 2017, Paru has led the spread of this innovation from Derby City to the whole of Southern Derbyshire.  She was one of the first Diabetes UK Clinical Champions, and the role has helped her achieve service development locally as well as given her the opportunity to be involved in her areas of interest at a national level.

Alison Barnes is a UK Registered Dietitian specialising in diabetes and weight management. She is a Senior Research Associate at Newcastle University, where she has worked on the Diabetes Remission Clinical Trial (DiRECT), and is now leading a research project called ReTUNE, investigating the effect of weight loss on type 2 diabetes remission in those diagnosed with the condition at lower BMIs.

As a dietitian with Type 1 Diabetes, Alison has an insight into the kinds of challenges faced by people living with long-term conditions, favouring an approach which empowers patients to better manage their own health. Alison is a graduate of the award winning Diabetes UK Clinical Champions programme, and has an honorary contract as a Diabetes Specialist Dietitian with Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Alison can be contacted at

Dr Sabrina Ahmed is a GPwSI in Diabetes at the Gower Street Practice in London. She is also the clinical lead for Diabetes at her Surgery.

Dr Ahmed completed her medical rotation in North-west England, at the Royal Blackburn Hospital. She continued working there as a Senior Clinical Fellow in Diabetes and Endocrinology till 2007 and then decided to move to Primary Care and completed her VTS training in Birmingham.

Dr Ahmed passed her SCE in Endocrinology and Diabetes in 2016, as a way of ensuring her passion for maintaining her knowledge and standards in this speciality.

She is very keen about innovative ideas and developments in novel therapy in Diabetes, and is excited about being one of the judges in the QiC Diabetes this year.

Marc has been a Consultant in Diabetes, Endocrinology and Internal Medicine in Bath, UK since 2012, having trained on the south coast of England. He is lead for a diabetes inpatient care team which was shortlisted for the HSJ Patient Safety Award in 2014. Marc is diabetic foot lead for the RUH and has taken part in a SW Peer Review team that has successfully reduced amputation rates across the South West.

Marc is clinical lead for the development of an integrated diabetes care service which is now being extended to cover 3 CCGs in the SW of England. Marc is chair of NHS England’s SW Cardiovascular Clinical Network.

His interests include service development, patient safety and innovation in service delivery. He is currently attending Haelo in Salford, undertaking training in Quality Improvement Science. He has previously served as Chair of Young Diabetologists Forum (YDEF) and is currently on the committee of Association of British Clinical Diabetologists (ABCD) and is part of their group working to improve T1 diabetes care in the UK.

As Head of Medical for Primary Care and Country Medical Chair, Sanofi UK & Ireland  Dr Bland is accountable for the medical strategy and governance of Sanofi UK & Ireland.

Dr Bland joined the industry after working in the NHS as an anaesthetist.  He is an accomplished pharmaceutical physician having developed over 50 new chemical entities and worked on over 200 clinical trials.  He previously held leadership positions with Pfizer, Boehringer-Ingelheim, Linde, University of Surrey’s Clinical Research Centre and TMC Pharma.

Jason’s clinical work focuses on inpatient diabetes care, avoidance of in-hospital diabetes complications, and the systemic models in delivering and modernising this healthcare service.  His academic interests include diabetes in severe complex obesity and its surgical management, having devoted time in this rapidly growing specialist field as a NIHR academic clinical fellow.  He is also a passionate advocate of NHS workforce well-being, co-founder of national online peer support network for NHS staff, and regularly work with stakeholders regarding workplace supports for doctors and nurses.

Anne is Nurse Consultant at Barts Health, which consists of The Royal London, St Bartholomew’s, Newham and Whips Cross hospitals. She is also a Lecturer Practitioner at City University, where she runs the diabetes care modules.

Anne is a committee member of the Diabetes Inpatient Specialist Nurse Group and a member of the National Diabetes Inpatient Audit group. She is also a member of the National Diabetes Partnership Board. Anne has participated in the writing of the JBDS guidelines for HHS and DKA.

Anne is particularly interested in diabetes inpatient care, and educating staff to provide better care for people with diabetes whilst they are in hospital.

Dr Tunde Falode is General Manager for the Primary Care Business Unit in the UK and Ireland at Sanofi, a global pharmaceutical company. Following graduation from the University of Jos Medical School in Nigeria, he secured a basic surgical training post through Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospitals in London, eventually specializing in  cardiac and thoracic surgery, before changing his career path and joining Sanofi as a medical advisor in 2008. In addition to his current role at Sanofi, he recently completed his specialist training in pharmaceutical medicine and has a keen interest in sports.

Patient empowerment has been at the heart of Kate’s strategy for developing an intermediate community service which has relocated type 1 and type 2 diabetes care into the community. Last year Kate was appointed Diabetes UK Clinical Champion with a project that focuses on community-delivered specialist type 1 diabetes care.

In 2018 the West Hampshire team was shortlisted by the HSJ Improving Value in Diabetes awards for work centered on parity of esteem and equitable access to diabetes care.

Senior In-Patient Diabetes Specialist Nurse (William Harvey Hospital)

Consultant Nurse (Project Lead) – Ashford CCG Housebound Project & Mocketts Wood Surgery

Sarah moved into Diabetes Care in 2000, initially as a Community DSN. Since 2008 she has been an In-Patient DSN – she set up the In-Patient DSN service in East Kent, developing an electronic referral system, improving diabetes care in the acute setting and auditing and identifying areas for improvement.

She has developed and delivered a three day training programme for in-patient nurses to improve standards of diabetes care in the acute setting, which is now delivered across all three sites, components of which are also duplicated when teaching junior doctors.

She has an interest in developing resources and games for learning, and for her work during ‘Hypo Awareness week’ in 2017, she was nominated for a Quality in Care award, coming 2nd in this national award – for development of resources for prevention and management of hypoglycaemia in hospital

Sarah has also worked with other disciplines and agencies to develop, deliver and evaluate a three day Foundation Course for GP’s and Practice Nurses, delivery of diabetes education to care home and nursing homes, as well as workshops for those working within Mental Health. She has published in the Journal of Community Nursing for the work she did in care homes.

She is currently working on a housebound project within Ashford CCG to review elderly or frail people with diabetes and ensure that have adequate care planning.

Sarah is a Diabetes UK Clinical champion – a national role working locally to raise the profile of Diabetes in East Kent, and to look at collaborative working and influencing others in improving diabetes care. This has included collaborative working with other specialists, which has led to a joint publication in the Journal of Renal Care.

She has also moderated for the NHS Transformation funding, and is a judge for the Rowan Hillson In-Patient Safety Award, Quality in Care (QiC) awards and is on the organising committee of the Diabetes Professional Conference.

Dr Clare Hambling is a GP in Norfolk, where she is the GP Clinical Lead for Diabetes. Clare has a long standing interest in diabetes and is passionate about improving standards of care for people living with diabetes. She is a professional member of Diabetes UK and a Diabetes UK Clinical Champion and is honoured to Chair the Primary Care Diabetes Society.​

Philip is married has 2 grown up children and 5 grandchildren. Living in Derbyshire Philip is a senior lecturer at the University of Derby.

Diagnosed type 2 diabetes in 2002 when living in Aberdeen. Moved back home to Derbyshire in 2010. Currently Chairperson of the Ashbourne UK Diabetes group.

Diagnosed CKD in 2003 progressing to end stage kidney failure in 2016.

A renal patient on nocturnal home haemodialysis and an advocate for Nxstage home haemodialysis.

Bethany Kelly currently works in the diverse and multi-cultural city of Southampton, as a Community Diabetes Specialist Nurse. Bethany has been involved with diabetes care for the last 8 years of her career.

Bethany has had multiple pieces of work about diabetes care, awareness and promotion and the FreeStyle Libre published by NHS England, the Nursing Times, and the Journal of Diabetes Nursing. Bethany became an executive team member of the Diabetes Specialist Nursing Forum UK in 2018. As part of this team, Bethany was overwhelmed to receive the “Healthcare Professional of the Year 2018 award” at the Quality in Care Diabetes Awards.; she has also been nominated for the Health Service Journal award for Diabetes Initiative of the Year 2019. Bethany joined the newly appointed multidisciplinary focused Forum for Injection technique board as a board member in October 2018. Bethany has been involved in speaking events, and was a national speaker at the Diabetes Specialist Nurse Forum UK Tour in 2018.

Bethany’s’ interests lay in working with younger adults whom have transitioned from paediatric care. Bethany has been involved with the Diabetes UK change lab project to improve this in her local area. She has also guest lectured on topic for the University of Southampton on their master’s programme. Bethany loves up and coming diabetes technology and how social media communities can help form holistic person centred care.

Bethany has recently been involved with a collaborative effort to perform a mass type 2 diabetes screening event at a premier league football match working alongside other NHS trusts, as well as big charities DRWF and the Saints Foundation. This gained national press coverage.

In 2013 David was appointed Clinical Lead for Diabetes to the South East Coast Clinical Network and in 2017 joined Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust as Consultant to the Diabetes Care for You service.  Within the Trust he is Area Clinical Director and part of its senior leadership team. Diabetes Care for You has taken an integrated, clinically led, quality driven approach and has a robust programme of continuous improvement using systematic data analysis.

Carol Metcalfe RGN, RSCN, MSc has 37 years of nursing experience with 24 years working in the field of paediatric diabetes. She has worked in hospital and community settings throughout the East and West Midlands and for the last 6 years in the North West. Carol has spoken at national and regional meetings, this includes presenting to the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Diabetes at the Houses of Parliament. She is a current and active member of the Council for Health Care Professionals as a paediatric advisor to Diabetes UK. She was a member of the guideline development group for the NICE 2015 NG18 and a Specialist committee member for the Quality Standards 125 (Children and Young People with diabetes) also by NICE in 2016. She has also been a member of national working groups most recently a technology appraisal with NHSE and is a current member of the Type 2 diabetes in children and young people working group. She is a judge on the Quality in Care awards for Diabetes for the past two years and is a qualified diabetes educator. Carol has also supported Diabetes UK for over 20 years with their Type 1 events as a volunteer senior nurse and volunteer event organiser.

She is currently the Advanced Specialist Practitioner and team lead for paediatric diabetes at Royal Manchester Childrens Hospital.

I am a Paediatric Endocrinologist, with CCT in Endocrinology in 2014 and run a tertiary paediatric endocrine clinic at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals covering a population of approx. 70,000 Doncaster children besides taking referrals from Worksop and surrounding areas.

I have been the lead for Diabetes at DRI since 2014, as well as research lead for the same period. I am the Diabetes network chair for Yorkshire and Humber diabetes network.

My team has actively participated in diabetes research and based on our success we were successful in getting a designated research nurse for paediatrics for the last 7 years at least. My team has taken part in commercial and non-commercial diabetes research projects.

I am the Clinical Director for paediatrics at my trust since 2017 and lead a team of 15 consultants.

Helena began volunteering at JDRF the type 1 diabetes charity 6 years ago, she has worked within the organisation since, in several different roles. The last 3 years she has worked on the Community Engagement team, creating resources and holding events to support those affected by type 1 diabetes.

She has been instrumental in the development of a wide range of projects including the JDRF Schools Programme and events solely for adults with type 1 and works hard to ensure there is support available for people with type 1 at every stage of their lives.

Charles is a Consultant Pharmacist in Primary Care and Diabetes employed by the Dacorum GP federation under DHPL. He holds two postgraduate masters degrees in clinical pharmacy and diabetes, he completed his masters in diabetes at the Leicester diabetes centre (LDC) where he developed an interest in holistic integrated diabetes care delivery services. He also holds a postgraduate diploma in advanced urgent primary care with independent prescribing. Over the years he has gained clinical experiences as a hospital, community, and primary care pharmacist.

Charles is one of four diabetes UK clinical champions who are pharmacists. He represents pharmacy on the diabetes UK conference organising committee and primary care course.

Dr Julia Platts graduated from the Medical School of St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London in 1989 and undertook speciality training in Wales and became a Consultant in Diabetes and Endocrinology in Glan Clwyd Hospital, North Wales, in 2002. In 2008 she moved to the University Hospital of Llandough, Cardiff. She also works with Cardiff University, developing modules for the Diabetes Diploma. She was appointed as the National Clinical Lead for Diabetes in Wales in 2014 to help deliver the Diabetes Delivery Plan in Wales. She has a particular clinical interest in type 1 diabetes, technology and diabetes, young adult services, pregnancy and diabetes and a service development interest in education in diabetes, prevention and remission services in diabetes.

Jo works currently a Renal/ Diabetes Clinical Nurse Specialist and works at Imperial NHS Trust within the Imperial College Renal Transplant Centre at the Hammersmith Hospital in London.

This role encompasses both inpatient and outpatient responsibilities and predominately focusses on renal transplantation and dialysis diabetes services.

Jo is a member of the RCN Diabetes Nursing Forum Steering Committee and also sits on the Diabetes Inpatient Nurse group as a committee member.

She also lectures regularly at the local university on diabetes related subjects for post registration students.

Becky graduated from Salford University in 1994 with an Economics degree and then undertook her Chartered Institute of Marketing Diploma at Nottingham Business School. She joined AstraZeneca spending nine years there in a number of roles including sales, management and training.

Joining Aventis (now Sanofi) Becky has experienced a number of commercial and medical roles, providing valuable experience and forging a number of relationships across the company, the industry and amongst key stakeholders in diabetes and in the NHS.

In January 2011 Becky became the Head of Professional Relations for Sanofi Diabetes, and through this role has enabled Sanofi to support programmes such as Quality in Care Diabetes and develop free apps for children with diabetes such as Monster Manor and Mission T1D.

I have been a paediatric diabetes consultant since 2006. In my first consultant post I set up a paediatric diabetes service from scratch, including an insulin pump service. I initiated a local paediatric diabetes charity and used the monies raised to take the children and young people on local activities and also residential activity weekends.

I was one of the founder members of the national Association for Children’s Diabetes Clinicians and became the treasurer, setting up the initial account. I continue to be an active member of the ACDC committee and am involved in the guidelines group. This year I am running the ACDC national trainees study day.

I am currently involved in the BSPED special interest group looking at our national paediatric DKA guideline.

In 2012 I moved to Wexham Park Hospital where I head up the paediatric diabetes team. Our team is currently involved in the national Quality Improvement project.

Erica is the Lead Diabetes Specialist Nurse at the Royal Shrewsbury and Telford NHS Trust and Advisor for

Her main areas of interest are insulin pump care and management, diabetes in-patient care, and educating individuals with diabetes and hospital staff to improve standards of care. This role is extended further through her position with TREND-UK and has led to delivery of presentations at the national conferences for the past two years.

She has also been involved in the correlation of the latest competency documentation and has published articles for the Journal of Diabetes Nursing

Dr Tim Robbins is a Clinical Research Fellow at ST4 level working at University Hospitals Coventry & Warwickshire NHS Trust. He works with the Institute of Digital Healthcare at The University of Warwick on digital health research initiative, in particular considering the application of co-production and co-design in digital health interventions. He is a member of the national Young Diabetologist & Endocrinologist Committee, which is the trainee and young consultants wing of Diabetes UK. (

Vicky Ruszala is a specialist pharmacist at North Bristol NHS Trust. She works in a specialist capacity with the diabetes and endocrinology team, trying to improve inpatient experience for those with diabetes and reducing errors in diabetes care. She leads the NBT team quality improvement program, with a current focus on reducing insulin errors and inpatient hypoglycaemia.

Currently she is on secondment to Bath and North East Somerset CCG as a specialist pharmacist in the integrated diabetes service. As well as contributing to strategic changes in the systemic management of diabetes, she is also running independent specialist clinics in GP practices to aid achievement of the three key NICE targets.

For the last 7 years she has been part of the UKCPA Diabetes Group committee, which has allowed her to contribute to raising the standard of diabetes care at a national level, in all healthcare settings. She been the joint chair of this group for the past 5 years.  Currently she is the pharmacist lead of the endocrinology Clinical Reference Group for NHS England and has also worked as pharmacist representative on the guideline development group for the new NICE Type 1 diabetes guideline.

She has been published in a range of journals on different aspects of diabetes care. As a speaker she has had the privilege of attending and speaking at a range of national and international conferences. In addition, she works locally providing diabetes education for primary and secondary care professionals, including pharmacists, nurses and doctors.

I am a motivated RGN (BSc & Post Grad Dip in Health Service Management) with 39 years service within the NHS currently working a Director of Community Services.  I have specialised in diabetes for 18 years with a passion for staff and service development. My role has involved transforming the service in to an outstanding clinically led community-based service supporting primary care and in-patient diabetes services across North East Essex.

My role also involves being a visiting fellow with the University of Essex and have developed and established diabetes courses and workshops which have been delivered across Essex which has resulted in my QIC award of Educator of the Year (2018).

Quality In Care Diabetes

  • 2020 KEY DATES
  • Open for entry: Wednesday 18 March 2020
  • Entry deadline: Friday 29 May 2020
  • Judging day: Thursday 16 July 2020
  • Awards ceremony: Thursday 15 October 2020
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