Specialist service for diabetes patients

NORTH Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust offers a high-quality service for patients suffering from diabetes.

Specialist nurses are based at the University Hospital of Hartlepool, in Holdforth Road, while ‘one-stop shop style’ services are also available for patients within the One Life Centre, in Park Road.

A total of 5,753 are currently registered as being diabetic in Hartlepool, and of that figure around 1,300 more complex cases are registered with the specialist teams at the hospital.

A spokeswoman for the North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust said: “Most people who are diagnosed with diabetes look after the condition themselves with the support of their GP and practice.

“However when things become complex – the drugs or dietary advice given is not keeping the diabetes under control or the person has a number of other medical conditions which is making their diabetes difficult to live with – the GP will refer in to the diabetes team at the University Hospital of Hartlepool.

“Patients are seen by a consultant or senior doctor at the first visit then they will spend time with a diabetes specialist nurse who will work with them to get the condition under control. This includes looking at different drugs and the way they are taken; everything from tablets, regular injections to insulin pumps.

“The emphasis is very much on supporting and teaching people to gain control of their diabetes.

“An education programme, DESMOND (diabetes education, self management, ongoing and newly diagnosed) gives patients the information they need to understand diabetes, to spot the signs that things are going wrong and to take action quickly to prevent things becoming more serious.

“One Life Hartlepool North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust’s community service provides annual retinal screening and a foot clinic.

“At this one stop shop patients also have their blood pressure checked and blood tested.

“All this information is then given back to the GP and can be discussed at the next appointment.”