DigiBete Website for T1 Diabetes
by Leeds Children’s Hospital and DigiBete CIC
Read the case study
DigiBete is a unique video web platform and social enterprise, created by a patient-led initiative and the Leeds Children and Young People’s Diabetes Team. It helps children, young people and their families self-manage diabetes by creating online resources. Essential information at diagnosis, educational videos and emergency advice for common acute complications are all available. Downloads of guidelines and other resources are also available to professionals and parents alike. Launched in August 2016, the web platform is constantly evolving, with new content added regularly.
"The DigiBete Website gained unanimous praise from patient representatives and healthcare professionals. It’s a great resource – the videos are especially appealing to children. It succeeds in being ‘aspirational’ about what people with the condition can do, but also offers high quality practical advice in line with national guidance. It provides quick answers to common questions, but also in-depth explanations for technical areas such as insulin pumps, and brings lots of resources together in one place. There is real potential for this service to make a difference in helping to raise standards and produce more consistent guidance across the country."
Improving Communication with Families Using a Smartphone App
by NHS Ayrshire & Arran
A communication survey was carried out with children, young people and their families attending the diabetes clinic. Families were unanimously in favour of using an app. Communication between the diabetes team and families via email or post was often inconsistent and an ineffective way of getting maximum coverage with any particular communication or message. The app idea came from local schools’ effective use of apps. The majority of local families attending the diabetes service use it. It stores useful information for them, provides links to recommended internet resources, a contact in emergencies and a platform for the local family group to publicise events and information. Feedback from users has been positive, driving further development.
"This smartphone app addresses a big every day problem of ensuring parents of children with type 1 diabetes have easy access to the most up to date information. This is a much more effective system than most local arrangements - a single channel of communication, rather than bombarding people with lots of messages on multiple channels, hoping they will use one. The judges said that this small clinic in the west of Scotland should be congratulated for their technical expertise and determination in developing the app, and also for identifying a real need among their service users."
TickleFLEX, the Insulin Injection Aid
by Tickle Tec Ltd
TickleTec’s founder had had type 1 diabetes for many years and had never been comfortable with the act of self-injecting. As an engineer, he developed the TickleFLEX device to make self-administering insulin much simpler. The device conceals the needle and the act of penetration, easing stress for needlephobics. It disguises discomfort by applying distraction analgesia – like rubbing an ache or scratching an itch. The large pad area acts like a snowshoe, preventing the needle from going in too deep, significantly reducing bruising. Its ‘fingers’ grip the skin, preventing needle shear from an unsteady hand, and extending the area that can be safely used for injecting. Many testimonials have been received from such parents who are grateful for the benefit TickleFLEX has brought to their lives.
"Lots of children go on pump therapy because of needle phobia and other issues around injection. TickleFLEX is a really well designed and simple device which could help a lot of children and families, and also reduce unnecessary demand for pump therapy as well."
GReaT Groups – Supporting Transition to Secondary School
by University College London Hospitals
Children with type 1 diabetes (T1D) are at greater risk of psychological problems and need psychosocial support as part of diabetes care. The transition from primary to secondary is one of the most difficult times, requiring adaptation to many emotional, social, organisational and cognitive changes. The University College London Hospitals (UCLH) Paediatric Psychology Service and Diabetes team developed a brief, family-based intervention that explores diabetes concerns during this period and allows opportunities to share ideas and resources. The Getting Ready for Transition (GReaT) group aims to increase confidence and reduce the concerns of children and parents.
"The GReaT Groups project aims at true preventative healthcare - heading off problems before they arise. Helping to share worries between children and parents, it involves really exploring and working through the worries of parents and children rather than just imparting information to them. Installing independence in the child was one of its most valuable objectives."
Personalised Care for Disengaged Young Adults Aged 16-30 with T1DM
by East and North Herts NHS Trust
Disengaged young adults with type 1 diabetes (T1D) are vulnerable to poor health outcomes, and difficult to support with existing models of care. East and North Herts Institute of Diabetes and Endocrinology (ENHIDE) developed a two-year pilot of supported tailored care, including a dedicated young adult (YA) support worker and diabetes specialist nurse (DSN), using text, Skype, email contact, flexible appointments and newer methods of treatment and monitoring. A survey found the majority of respondents rated the platform helpful and content ‘high quality’ and believed it could reduce contacts with the diabetes team for non-emergencies.
"East and North Herts NHS Trust have produced great innovative work to engage a hard-to-reach group of patients. The judges look forward to it producing some significant benefits for patients by the end of the project."