May 24, 2024

Ireland behind in treatment of children with Type 1 diabetes, medic warns – Belfast Telegraph

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Ireland is “very far” from where it should be in the treatment of children with Type 1 diabetes, an expert in the disease has claimed.

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Ireland is “very far” from where it should be in the treatment of children with Type 1 diabetes, an expert in the disease has claimed.

co-ordinated national strategy is vital to confronting the chronic condition, consultant Colin Hawkes said ahead of World Diabetes Day on Sunday.

A team at Cork University Hospital (CUH) treats almost 500 children with Type 1 diabetes, but insufficient resources mean it is not possible to see the youngsters every three months, as recommended, with some waiting six months or longer between appointments.

“We are also totally unequipped to address the psychological burden of this disease,” said Dr Hawkes, a paediatric endocrinologist at CUH.

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*NO REPRO FEE*Dr Colin Hawkes, Consultant Paediatric Endocrinologist at Cork University Hospital, says a co-ordinated national strategy is vital to confronting Type 1 diabetes – and that Ireland is unequipped to address the psychological burden of the disease. Picture: Brian Lougheed.

*NO REPRO FEE*Dr Colin Hawkes, Consultant Paediatric Endocrinologist at Cork University Hospital, says a co-ordinated national strategy is vital to confronting Type 1 diabetes – and that Ireland is unequipped to address the psychological burden of the disease. Picture: Brian Lougheed.

“We are very far from where we should be, there is a lot more that we need to be doing to meet the needs of these children and their families.

“In CUH alone, we have an exceptional team but we should have six diabetes nurses for the number of children we care for and we only have three.

“We have submitted a business case requesting three more. It is extremely difficult to provide the care these children deserve at such low staffing levels.

“We also should be at the forefront of research in this condition and are working to generate energy and funding to build a research team and programme.

“This will help us to get studies off the ground and give the children of Ireland access to research that will change the future of this condition.”

In Type 1 diabetes patients, the immune system attacks the pancreas, destroying cells that make insulin, crucial for sending glucose to the body’s cells for energy.

When a child is diagnosed, they must learn to detect glucose levels and administer insulin throughout the day and night.

There is not equity in Ireland in access to a full diabetes multi-disciplinary teamDr Colin Hawkes

Advances in technology, however, have largely replaced the finger-stick glucose checks with glucose monitors and …….

Source: https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/republic-of-ireland/ireland-behind-in-treatment-of-children-with-type-1-diabetes-medic-warns-41042020.html

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