Diabetes services across North East Essex and East Suffolk have been recognised for delivering high quality patient care, promoting best practice and improving education.
Together, services across the region were applauded for clinical excellence and a determination to raise standards for those living with diabetes.
The North East Essex Diabetes Service (NEEDS), managed by Suffolk GP Federation, scooped a win in one category and was highly commended in two others at the prestigious Quality In Care Diabetes Awards, while East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust also received a win in one category and a highly commended for their work within Ipswich Hospital.
NEEDS, commissioned by the North East Essex Clinical Commissioning Group and managed by Suffolk GP Federation, won the award for best adult diabetes education programme. Its innovative project focused on upskilling inpatient clinical pharmacists at Colchester General Hospital with the support of NEEDS Diabetes Specialist Nurses.
The service was praised for building a robust training programme which has enhanced the multi-disciplinary team working in the hospital and for achieving clear and rapid improvements in patient safety and wellbeing.
Meanwhile, East Suffolk and North East NHS Foundation Trust, made up of Ipswich Hospital and Colchester General Hospital, picked up the award for ‘Best Practice and Sustainability’ for the evolvement and expansion of the Diabetes Inpatient Care and Education Programme (DICE). The Ipswich inpatient diabetes team was also highly commended for its work during Insulin Safety Week.
Professor Gerry Rayman, Consultant Diabetologist at the East Suffolk and North East NHS Foundation Trust, said; “We are delighted to receive this prestigious award. It recognises the investment, hard work and ongoing innovations that has been delivered by the team to make the care of p with diabetes safer. This could not be achieved without great team work. We are particular proud that our work has inspired other diabetes teams around the country many of whom have adopted our processes and innovations.
Judges said: “The Evolvement and Expansion of the DICE Programme was an outstanding, excellent project. There was clear evidence of successful outcomes and dissemination. It was very well structured and showed the continuous learning in place. It is evidently sustainable and embedded with clear reference about what is new within the programme. An exceptional winner!”
Suffolk GP Federation was highly commended in the same category for its North East Essex Diabetes Service integrated approach, which has significantly improved patient outcomes and diabetes care across North East Essex.
Judges said: “The North East Essex Diabetes Service has proven to really improve patient care in the area. It is done on a vast scale and working under one budget has enabled the work to be shared and demonstrated savings. It really shows what can be achieved when teams work together.”
The service was also highly commended in the ‘Diabetes Team Initiative of the Year’ category for its Virtual Ward project. A project delivered in collaboration with Anglian Community Enterprise (ACE) Community Nurses which has helped housebound diabetes patients to better manage their conditions through improving their medication regimes, allowing Community Nurses to spend more time with the patients who need them most.
Adele Holcombe, Diabetes Service Manager at Suffolk GP Federation, said: “We are incredibly proud of all of the NEEDS team and everybody that has been involved with the service. These successes are a perfect example of how a collaborative and integrated approach can lead to improved outcomes to people living with diabetes and impact wider healthcare services across the NHS.”
Lorna Sainsbury, 47, from Mersea Island, a Type 1 diabetes patient with NEEDS, said: “I have attended a couple NEEDS education courses over the past few years including a DAFNE course and their Diabetes and You event. I have great praise for the service, the workshops have been very useful and always delivered professionally by the team – they have really supported me in managing my diabetes.”