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|04 July 2005|
Norfolk Diabetes Patient Adviser Group is launched
A group of 18 people with diabetes have been trained and mentored to act as a Patient Adviser group for other people with diabetes. This group has been set up by patient champions (Martin Land and Dave Rae) and clinical staff from primary and secondary care, on behalf of the Norfolk Integrated Diabetes Management Group (NIDM).
The advisers can talk to patients or parents about diabetes and how to cope with it. They don't give medical or emergency advice, but are essentially a talking and listening service for people with diabetes.
Martin Land, Patient champion and member of the Norfolk Diabetes Adviser Group said "I believe this unique service will be a major contribution to the lives of many people who live daily with diabetes. There can be times when living with the condition can be difficult both physically and emotionally and this is where the programme can be beneficial. We have a fantastic group of people who have vast experience in dealing with diabetes at first hand and they have put themselves forward to give their time and experience to help others. They have had training and are mentored by health care professionals so will be able to cope most situations. I feel privileged to be a part in what I believe will be a truly great service".
Dave Rea, Patient Champion and Patient Adviser said "The patients Adviser Group has been set up from a group of people who themselves have both Type one and Type two Diabetes, the wealth of experience gained by living with the condition, in some cases for many years and with a broad spectrum of situations from young people, diabetic mothers to people well into retirement allows us to offer the newly diagnosed patient or those moving on into progression of the condition a contact point with someone who can offer support for a reassuring chat with a person in the same or similar position. The service operates in a support role only and does not offer medical advice, the patient advisers have received training and are supported themselves by a team of mentors from the diabetic health care profession".
The group are also launching a dedicated telephone number (01603 288528) through which patients and their relatives can call.
Mike Sampson, consultant endocrinologist said "This new and fairly unique service means trained and interested people with diabetes can offer advice to others with the same condition based on the shared experience of having diabetes. The advisors will be supported and mentored by clinical staff from primary and secondary care. We are delighted that the Acute Trust and PCTs have shown interest in and support for this programme".
The Chief Executives from the NNUH, and the PCTs are to attend, as is a member from the Strategic Health Authority.