800 new type2 diabetes diagnosis in local area each year

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A new patient programme for people in the Ballymena and Antrim areas with Type 2 diabetes has been introduced by the The Northern Health and Social Care Trust.

The course, known as DESMOND is a structured education programme aimed at 1,000 patients within the Northern Trust area.

There are approximately 800 newly diagnosed patients in the Northern Trust area per annum and the programme would aim to educate 500 of these newly diagnosed patients each year and provide the programme to a further 500 patients with established Type 2 diabetes with high risk complications.

The Trust provides a two centre model that delivers DESMOND structured education programmes across 4 localities.

The delivery of the programme is by registered health care professionals who have a working knowledge of diabetes and an interest and experience in working with patients with diabetes. The trainers have all attended a formal training course with DESMOND.

Referrals to the programme are received from General Practitioners, Diabetic Nurse Specialists, Practice Nurses and secondary care professionals. Priority is given to people with a new diagnosis and to people with diabetes management problems that could result in long term complications or hospital admissions. Angela McErlane, Clinical Services Manager for Specialist Medicine said: “DESMOND is effective as a standalone intervention for patients and having completed 8 hours training, patients’ ongoing routine care is provided from their GP Practice where their action plan forms part of their annual review”.

“As the incidence of type 2 diabetes increases there is a corresponding increase in diabetic complications including retinopathy, renal disease, ulceration and amputation. Without patient education, there will in all likelihood be increases in ED attendances, hospital admissions and community ulcer management, therefore this programme is a valuable programme for patients to extend their knowledge of their diabetes and the complications that can occur from poor compliance to recommendations”.

Patients with type 2 Diabetes interested in the programme should speak to their GP or relevant healthcare professional for more information.