Empowerment and self-management

English

Listen to a voice

Listen to the voice of a young girl Lonnie, who was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at 16. Imagine that she is deeply involved in the social security system. She lives with her mother and two siblings in a working class part of a small town. She is at a special school for problematic youth, and her carers are seriously concerned about how she is going to manager her diabetes.

Combined study reveals gaps in diabetes therapy

Care of people with diabetes is in need of improvement. Patients are often left in the dark about their condition and many receive false or unnecessary medication. It has been shown in a recent German study, performed by the Centre for Sociopolitics at the University of Bremen, together with the medical insurance company, Gmünder Ersatzkasse (GEK), that too few people with diabetes are being subscribed much needed medication, too many are taking the wrong type of medication and many are inadequately informed about sensible diet and self-management techniques.

Self-care: an important and cost-effective investment

The elevated cost of diabetes can be seen as the result of all previous failures of treatment. As illustrated in this article, treating diabetes complications is far more expensive than taking preventative measures. Future cost cutting, therefore, can only be achieved by improving the level of care, especially in the field of self-management. People with diabetes must be given the means to do this, which can only be attained by future investment.

Helping people with diabetes: a rewarding task for the PUMCH Diabetes Education Centre in China

Diabetes has ‘arrived’ in China. This condition was relatively rare among the Chinese population until 20 years ago. As life has become more and more westernized and industrial, the prevalence of diabetes has increased rapidly. The average prevalence rate has increased from just under 1 percent in 1980 to as high as nearly 7 percent in some areas in 1996. Chinese health resources are struggling to keep up with this explosion. However, the Peking Union Medical College Hospital (PUMCH) have an education programme which is producing positive outcomes.

Becoming experts

Increasing the knowledge of people with diabetes gives them motivation and promotes better diabetes control. This, in turn, enhances quality of life and delays, if not totally prevents, the onset of complications. The Danish Diabetes Education Centre, opened in Odense, 1993, does just that, by providing teaching and assistance to people with diabetes and their friends and families. The centre educates over 500 people in total each year.

New roles in diabetes care

Empowerment is a philosophy that recognizes the fundamental right of people with diabetes to be the primary decision makers in the management of their condition. It represents a more compatible model of care and education needed for a self-managed illness such as diabetes.

Empowerment: a matter of choice

There has been an enormous change over the last 30 years in diabetes care and education in Germany and most of Western Europe. Nowadays, feelings of frustration have decreased for both healthcare professionals and people with diabetes, as it is finally becoming recognized just who is responsible for what.

Successful self-care: the best sign of empowerment

Editor-in-Chief's editorial

An individual decision

President's editorial

A dream becomes reality

Palma, Mallorca, 3-8 July, 2001. The VIII European Masters Championships in Swimming, Diving and Open Water Swimming took place. James Foley of the Diabetes Federation of Ireland’s and John Keeler, former Editor of Identity, the Federation’s magazine, were there to take part! James, from Dublin, is 39 years old and has had diabetes for 19 years. I, also of Dublin, am 30 and have had diabetes for 26 years.

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