CO-OPERATION IS THE KEY
AN innovative mix of online learning and practical workshops is being used to train healthcare workers in diagnosing and treating diabetes.
Health workers are often pressured by time and work and can find it difficult to get to traditional training schemes.
But now in Scotland NHS Highland has worked out the scheme with Skills for Health to identify the competences health care workers need to ensure they can offer consistent diagnosis and treatment to a geographically diverse and fluctuating number of patients.
Throughout the UK, the rate of diabetes is expected to increase over the next 1015 years and health workers need to be trained to meet the need.
The most prevalent is Type 2, which develops when the body can still make some insulin but not enough, or when the insulin that is produced does not work properly. In most cases, but not all, the cause is obesity and usually affects people over the age of 40 but is becoming more common in younger people as well.
Severe complications can set in if people are not diagnosed early or fail to get the right care.
NHS Highland cares for almost 300,000 residents as well as tourists, who at certain times of the year can double or even triple the population. This new and innovative training programme extends the role of healthcare workers to offer patients consistent diagnosis and treatment close to home.
To create the programme, NHS Highland and the University of Highlands and Islands Millennium Institute (UHI) pulled together teams of practitioners and educationalists plus nurse specialists, dieticians and podiatrists.
Pulling together: co-operative approach to health in Highlands