Enhancing Specialist Knowledge for Pharmacists to Optimise Diabetes Medication Management
by NEEDS (North East Essex Diabetes Service)
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The project focused on upskilling inpatient clinical pharmacists through completing the advanced diabetes management course, followed by a new, collaborative-working initiative involving regular clinical supervision and support from the North East Essex Diabetes Service (NEEDS) inpatient DSNs. The project demonstrated that clinical pharmacists were able to improve medication safety through medication reviews, highlighting and identifying any clinical risks, and optimising patient therapy. They gained skills and confidence to support diabetes management at ward level, leading to improved patient safety, reduced DSN workload, plus greater diabetes awareness and knowledge within the hospital.
"This very innovative project makes use of the existing expertise in pharmacists, and gives them a greater role in managing diabetes patients. The judges congratulated the NEEDS team on building a robust training programme which enhances the multi-disciplinary team working in the hospital setting, and for achieving clear and rapid improvements in patient safety and wellbeing. The judges believe this programme could be replicated elsewhere in the health service and would help address workload issues for Diabetes Specialist Nurses, bringing about real clinical improvements in care."
Diabetes.co.uk – Low Carb Program
The Low Carb Program (LCP), launched in November 2015, is a 10-week, automated, structured health intervention for adults with type 2 diabetes, pre-diabetes and obesity. Each patient’s journey is personalised through an AI-led engagement pathway. The programme was developed in collaboration with Southport GP Dr David Unwin (NHS Innovator of the Year 2016) and the feedback of 20,000 patients with type 2 diabetes who completed a 54-question survey. Responses highlighted gaps in education. The forum takes account of patients’ personal goals, demographics, culture, associated co-morbidities, food preferences and budgets to influence changed lifestyles. It is accessible via mobile, PC or App. It has raised the credibility and scientific understanding of type 2 diabetes remission. Over 326,324 people have downloaded the programme in 195 countries around the world.
"This programme is free to users and is very accessible – it has already been tried by thousands of people, and it could make a big difference to many adults with type 2 diabetes, or at risk of developing the condition. It’s also very welcome because it could prove to be extremely cost effective to the NHS, and is likely to bring about a reduction in medicines needs, rather than an increase."
Talking about Diabetes (TAD) – Inspiration and Motivation for Diabetes
by Talking About Diabetes (TAD)
TAD talks were set up to provide an opportunity for people with type 1 diabetes (T1D) to share their own inspirational stories in order to encourage, empower and motivate others who have diabetes or care for someone with diabetes. When asked about outcome and how the respondent felt after attending the event, 82.6% reported that they were more positive about living or supporting someone with T1D. 69.6% were more motivated to achieve goals, while 58% felt more connected with a local network of like-minded people.
"This goes beyond the traditional idea of ‘diabetes education’ and instead aims to inspire people with type 1 diabetes to set their own challenging goals. The talks are especially popular with younger people and encourage them to take ownership of their condition and establish a support network of peers."
Film Prescriptions: A New Method for Delivering Patient Empowerment and Education
by Prince Philip Hospital/Hywel Dda
Film prescriptions produced by behavioural change media experts and developed by health professionals and patients in Wales have been deployed nationally. Over 30 films are now available for type 2, type 1, gestational and pre-diabetes, covering all aspects of diabetes care. They were recently incorporated into the National Direct Enhanced Service (DES) for Diabetes in Wales and are viewed by approximately 1,000 patients each month. Initial evaluation of the system demonstrated improvement in disease control as measured by HbA1c.
"A very innovative idea to have films available on prescription! An excellent concept, well thought through from the patients’ perspective and well presented. These videos help educate and inform patients more effectively than traditional methods."
Exercise Classes for People with Diabetes with Specialist Nurse Support
by University Hospital Plymouth NHS Trust
The Diabetes Team identified a gap in the care provided for patients in terms of exercise provision. In collaboration with the Sports Development Team (SDT) at Plymouth City Council (PCC), a low-cost, weekly circuits group for people with diabetes with Diabetes Specialist Nurse (DSN) support was established.
The project is being evaluated with the aim of expanding it to offer further exercise classes and support to all patients. Responses have been positive, with participants reporting anecdotally increased fitness, weight loss, medication reductions (both diabetes and blood pressure medication), increased activity levels and overall health.
"A great idea, and a great opportunity for people with T2D. This looks like a very cost effective and sustainable project which could be expanded and used more widely."