More than 9,500 people in Milton Keynes have diabetes. By 2030, this figure is expected to double, due to our ageing population and rates of obesity.
This means it is important to raise awareness of the condition and support people with diabetes so they can live healthy lives and avoid serious long-term complications such as loss of vision, kidney problems, heart problems, stroke and foot damage that can arise when diabetes is poorly managed.
Kelly Hodgson and Andrea Gresty, diabetes advanced nurse practitioners at Milton Keynes Hospital, are committed to helping patients understand their condition.
Kelly Hodgson said: “Andrea and I are committed to providing support and advice to people with diabetes. It is vital that patients are given all the help and support they need to manage their condition. We educate people to become as self sufficient in their own care, so they can adapt and lead a normal life. It is imperative that people manage their diabetes condition so they can avoid hospital admissions and long-term complications.”
Pamela Hampton-Jones has had Type 1 diabetes for 22 years. Pamela is grateful to Andrea for her support in helping her manage her condition by advising her on the appropriate foods to eat. Andrea has also helped clarify Pamela’s needs to her family, who do not have the condition.
Pamela said: “Nothing seems too much trouble for Andrea and her team. I’ve requested her to come and see me numerous times and no matter how busy she is, she spends as much time as I feel necessary. I’m now looking forward to my next diabetic appointment, knowing that Andrea is at the end of the phone…being a diabetic will not be so much of a chore.”
Patient Steven Candy, who has Type 2 diabetes, said: “From logging my glucose levels to looking at my diet and leading me through the use of insulin, they’ve really helped me turn my life around. Some people think that if they ignore it, it will go away. But it won’t. The nurses have also helped me to take charge of my own insulin while I stay in hospital. It helped me to remain in control of my condition. There is always someone at the end of the phone to answer questions or to give support. They are always so cheerful. Nothing is too much.”
It is important that patients’ diabetes is managed properly when they come into hospital for treatment that is unrelated to their diabetes. Kelly and Andrea provide ongoing education about diabetes to doctors and nurses in order to raise awareness and ensure that their patients’ condition is managed appropriately.
Andrea Gresty added: “With more people being diagnosed with diabetes, it is vital that doctors and nurses are aware how to treat patients who have the condition. We have worked with our colleagues to help them understand and provide the extra treatment patients with diabetes need while they are in our care.”