Background: The children and teenage diabetes team currently care for 270 patients in the region and includes speciality doctors, specialist nurses, dieticians and psychologists.
Objective and null hypothesis: To evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the local care provided by the team, and learn from current patient experience.
Method: An anonymous questionnaire was completed by diabetic patients aged 920 years when attending clinic appointments. It included tick box answers, rating scales and free text answers.
Results: Feedback from 113 patients in 2013 was overwhelmingly positive, but allowed the team to identify key areas for development. Patients felt that the waiting room environment lacked educational information on diabetes, and reported inadequate emotional support and access to psychology appointments. Following the 2013 study, the team has relocated to a dedicated clinic for diabetic patients. Two psychologists also began working with the team and emotional wellbeing screening was introduced for all patients. The study was repeated in 2014 and completed by 114 patients, showing an encouraging response to interventions made. 22% more patients had been offered a psychology appointment, and 37% more patients found the appointment useful. 87% of patients felt emotionally well supported by the diabetes team compared to 79% prior to the changes. There was also an improvement in feedback for waiting times, appropriateness of environment and feeling welcome in clinic. The 2014 study also helped to identified areas for further improvement. Only 60% of patients were receiving written treatment plans, and only 47% of patients received care by team members designated to them.
Conclusion: This patient questionnaire is an innovative method of obtaining honest and constructive local feedback on current strengths as well as identifying areas requiring improvement. We plan to repeat this questionnaire annually to encourage continued patient participation, optimising the quality of diabetes care provided.
01 Oct 2015 - 03 Oct 2015