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Improving diabetes care during pandemic

20th October 2021

Diabetes Network NI logo

A group of specialists – including the clinical director of the Board’s Diabetes Network, Dr Hamish Courtney – have secured a national award for their efforts to support healthcare professionals caring for people living with diabetes during the pandemic.

The National Diabetes Inpatient COVID-19 Response Group, made up of health professionals in diabetes, from all four UK nations, created a series of documents aimed at providing Covid-specific guidance for front-line staff.

Their work received a Special Judges’ Award at the Quality in Care Diabetes 2021, which recognise, reward and share initiatives that improve the quality of life for people living with diabetes.

Commenting on the initiative from the group, the judges said it was an “outstanding initiative” directly supporting front-line healthcare professionals during an incredibly challenging time for services.

“The documents generated will have been (and still are) used in every hospital site in the country. Amazing work, fabulous team,” they said.

Commenting on the award, Dr Courtney said the pandemic meant many diabetes staff were redeployed to support inpatient care.

“Information from London and Italy suggested people with diabetes and COVID-19 infection had poorer outcomes, and that the infection might trigger new onset diabetes.

“The group’s purpose was to maintain consistent support for people with diabetes and provide COVID-specific guidance for specialists and non-specialists,” he said.

The Diabetes Network brings together people living with diabetes, carers and health and social care professionals working in partnership with Diabetes UK on the design and delivery of better diabetes services.