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Advice for people with diabetes and their families

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Southern area

Diabetes population

The Southern Local Commissioning Group operates in the same area as the Southern Health and Social Care Trust.  It includes Armagh, Banbridge, Dungannon, Craigavon and Newry & Mourne and experienced a higher than average growth of people with diabetes last year.

Treatment in the Southern Health and Social Care Trust

Generally people with Type 2 diabetes will be looked after by their GP practice team or be referred to a hospital diabetes clinic, especially if their needs are complex, depending on local facilities.  People with Type 1 diabetes will usually always be referred to the local hospital diabetes specialist team. 

Hospitals in this area include Craigavon Area Hospital and Daisy Hill Hospital in Newry. There are a range of clinics for different patients and some clinics may be available in the local, smaller hospitals.

Psychology Services

Each Trust in Northern Ireland has a clinical psychologist with a specialist interest in diabetes.  If someone is experiencing significant psychological distress which is affecting their ability to look after their diabetes a referral can be arranged via the local hospital diabetes team or via the community Diabetes Specialist Nurse. GPs also have access to local mental health services and sometimes to practise based counsellors who can help people to talk through and make sense of their feelings. 

Annual eye screening

Everyone with diabetes over the age of 12 should have their eyes screened, for diabetic retinopathy, on an annual basis.  In Northern Ireland the screening is organised centrally by the Diabetic Retinopathy Screening Programme. 

The Programme will obtain your details from your GP and send you a letter asking you to come for screening in your local area.  It is - even if you also attend your local optician.

If you need to make changes to your appointment you need to contact your GP surgery.

Structured diabetes education

Structured diabetes education has been found to be extremely effective in terms of de-mystifying how diabetes works and offering practical support on how to manage all aspects of diabetes including diet and lifestyle as well as blood glucose levels.  There are a range of different courses available for people with Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes that are designed to meet different needs. 

Type 1 diabetes

  • SHAIRE programme is delivered in Craigavon and Banbridge

Type 2 diabetes (more courses to be added)

  • SET 2 (Based on X-PERT) is delivered in Craigavon and Banbridge
  • X-PERT delivered in Craigavon, Banbridge and Newry & Mourne
  • DAY (Diabetes and You) for those newly diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes is delivered in Craigavon, Banbridge and Newry & Mourne 

 If you wish to attend a Structured Diabetes Education course you need to speak to your GP.

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