March 25, 2019

Diabetes team wins two awards

In front of 250 attendants, the Northern Health Ambulatory Diabetes team received two awards at the Australian Diabetes Educators (ADEA) conference, recently held in Albert Park.

Diabetes Nurse Educator, Susan Abraham, won the award for ‘Best Novice Oral Abstract Presentation’ on her project titled ‘Do people with diabetes change their self-management behaviours whilst on extended overseas holidays?’

The motivation for the project came from patients of different cultural backgrounds visiting the hospital. The diabetes team were unsure whether these patients were managing their diabetes properly when they were travelling overseas for holidays or family visits.

“It was interesting to see whether their diabetes would get worse once they went on holidays and what their results would be once they returned. What we found is their results were almost the same, which was good to know, as we needed to find out if they would be ignoring the condition under different circumstances,” she added.

Susan says it feels great to get this kind of appreciation from your colleagues and sees research as a way to improve diabetes services.

Her colleague, Diabetes Nurse Practitioner, Michelle Robins, won the ‘Best Poster Presentation’ award on her case study with Michelle Brooks, Care Coordinator, themed ‘When failure to attend reveals elder neglect and abuse’.

“The whole purpose of presenting this poster was to highlight the social determinants of health and how things that are not right at home can impact a person’s health,” Michelle Robins said.

Michelle also added that it’s important to look beyond pathology results and to actually dig deeper into a person’s life and their circumstances, as this has a major impact on the health of patients.

“The actual circumstances of the patient in the study motivated me to research further. I think it’s important to highlight the under-reported and under-recognised issue of elder abuse. My colleague, Michelle Brooks, was able to bring all parts together. With her help, our patient, who was the inspiration for the study, managed to get his diabetes under control,” she said.

Michelle Brooks added that it wasn’t just them helping the patient, it was the whole team working with the community, with a strong team focus on great patient outcomes.

Ambulatory Care Diabetes Coordinator, Catarina Hart, said this is the fourth year the Ambulatory Diabetes team have received a presentation award at the Australian Diabetes Educators Conference.

“I am incredibly proud of our achievements and we have a great team of dedicated diabetes educators who are committed to ongoing quality improvement and research activities,” she said.