Award-winning Diabetes management program rolled out at North Lakes
North Lakes Diabetes and kidney disease patients can now access a 10-week intervention-based education and exercise program that empowers patients to better manage their own symptoms, while reducing public health wait lists for services.
Thanks to MNHHS LINK funding, the unique, award-winning partnership program for diabetes between Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital (RBWH) has now been in operation for three years.
RBWH Dietitian and QUT Nutrition and Dietetics Clinic coordinator Andrea Cawte said the majority of participants who’ve since completed the program have been able to come off RBWH’s diabetes wait lists altogether.
“The multi-disciplinary approach incorporates dietetics, social work, podiatry, exercise physiology, optometry, nursing and psychology, which has led to some very successful outcomes,” Ms Cawte said.
“Participants get high-level advice on eating better and how to exercise even when they have conditions that may make exercise challenging, because they are assessed, supervised and encouraged by QUT exercise physiology students.”
The program is now being rolled out at North Lakes under QUT, RBWH and Community & Oral Health Services.
“Psychologists guide patients through goal setting and coping skills, diabetes educators address medication and self-management and social workers assist with other issues that can commonly arise throughout their journey,” Ms Cawte said.
QUT Director of Clinical Services and Education Robert Mullins said the program was a great example of how key partnerships between hospitals and the universities that are training the next generation of health professionals, could lead to greater outcomes for patients.
“It really gives our future health care providers the chance to put their skills into action in a clinical environment,” Mr Mullins said.
“As a result, people with diabetes for years or even decades who never really understood their condition properly, have gone on to lose significant weight, get their fasting glucose and their cholesterol levels under control and reported feeling better and more positive overall,” he said.
Patients with Type Two Diabetes can be referred to the North Lakes program. They can expect health assessments in the first and final weeks and weekly group exercise and education sessions for eight weeks.