History of the Network
The Diabetes Education Network was established in May 2003 (as the Type 1 Education Network) at a meeting in Bournemouth attended by 31 healthcare professionals. The meeting had been convened with the aim to better meet the needs of people living with diabetes by developing the evidence base for structured education in type 1 diabetes.
The Type 1 Education Network was set up with the following objectives:
- To support centres in delivering high quality self-management education for Type 1 diabetes
- To support centres in accessing appropriate staff training
- To enable centres to share best practice and learn from each other
- To develop common evaluation criteria to facilitate quality assurance
Meetings have since been held every six months; they included smaller workshops as well as plenary sessions. The workshops have focused on goal setting, setting up a course, paediatric education and audit. The last national meeting was in May 2006 when 80 people attended a workshop in London on developing a philosophy for type 1 education.
In view of the growing number of participants, it has been decided to hold a series of regional meetings each year and an annual national conference. The regional meetings have focused on Curriculum Development (November 2006) and Quality Development (May/June 2007). An inaugural Northern Ireland Regional meeting was held in April 2007. An inaugural Northern Ireland Regional meeting was held in April 2007. The first national conference took place in November 2007 in Birmingham, at which the decision was made to change the name of the network to the Diabetes Education Network. There are now over 400 healthcare professionals on the network database, representing over 70 centres.
The membership is involved in delivering (or planning to deliver) structured education for adults and children with diabetes. Most centres belonging to the Network now run local intensive type 1 diabetes education programmes. An increasing number have also developed other programmes, for example, for the newly diagnosed. A number of professionals from DAFNE centres actively participate in the Network.
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In order to cater for the increasing interest in and membership of the Network, a Steering group was set up in 2005. The group meets every 3-4 months to plan regional meetings, the annual conference and to develop frameworks for curriculum development and quality development processes.
The steering group currently has the following members:
David Cavan, Consultant Physician, Bournemouth (Spokesman)
Jonathan Roland, Consultant Physician, Peterborough (Treasurer)
Helen Loughnane, Dietitian, Blackburn (Membership Secretary)
Chris Kelly, Consultant Physician, Stirling
Suzanne Lucas, Diabetes Education Consultant, Kent
Jackie Sturt, Associate Professor, University of Warwick
Lyndi Wiltshire, Diabetes Specialist Nurse, Birmingham
Trudi Deakin, Chief Executive of X-PERT Health, Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire
Chris Cheyette, Diabetes Specialist Dietitian, London
Dr. Sheridan Waldron, BA, RD, PhD, Specialist Diabetes Dietitian
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“Supporting diabetes teams in integrating structured education for children and adults with diabetes in their service, by providing a framework for curriculum development, educator training, quality assurance and audit which meets the Department of Health criteria”
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Vision and Work Plan
In 5 years time we will be a UK wide generic self management education network for diabetes that ensures the delivery of high quality structured education programmes for people with diabetes by:
- Facilitating the development of programmes and educators
- Facilitating regional training and Quality Development
- Facilitating a national benchmarking system for self management programmes
- Facilitating the accreditation of systems which offer self management education programmes as well as individual educators in partnership with NHS bodies and non statutory organisations
- Facilitating relationships with other long term conditions stakeholders and networks to share best practice
In order to deliver the vision, a work plan has been developed which will include:
- Developing structured self management education tools and skills via documents and workshops– i.e. curriculum framework; development of philosophies and identification of theories for individual programmes; peer review process; audit
- Holding regional meetings which will support the further development of programmes using the tools developed and which will also discuss opportunities and barriers to integrating DEN programmes into local care pathways with the longer term aim of the DEN developing an outline model of care
- Developing a communications strategy which raises the profile and need for structured self management education in diabetes care. It will include a review of current resources and initiatives. It will explore the different audiences that need to be communicated with e.g. healthcare professionals, people living with diabetes, commissioners, other potential stakeholders etc.
- Develop a web site and discussion forums
- Holding a national conference on structured education
- Develop a framework for centres to support them in meeting the DH / NICE criteria for a broader range of diabetes programmes e.g. pumps, type 2 diabetes etc.
- Identify stakeholders and meet with them to explore and develop a system of formal accreditation for programmes and educators in diabetes
- Explore / develop generic and diabetes specific competencies for self management educators
- Explore the provision of appropriate training for educators in skills such as group facilitation
- Identify areas of research needed to develop the evidence base of structured self management education.
- Explore and initiate meetings with long term conditions stakeholders / networks re sharing good practice in self management education
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