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MyDESMOND: a Digital Diabetes Programme launches for Adults with Type 2 diabetes

by Debbie Manning | May 11, 2020

During these unprecedented times when group based health education is not possible Luton Adult Services are now proud to offer adults with Type 2 diabetes, MyDESMOND (My Diabetes Education and Self-Management for Ongoing and Newly Diagnosed), a national online educational programme.

With the latest figures in the UK showing that the number of people diagnosed with diabetes has more than doubling in the last 20 years to 3.8 million recorded currently, and about 90% diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes is a progressive condition which develops when the body still makes some insulin but it doesn’t work properly or production is reduced. Management of Type 2 diabetes varies from person to person; some through diet and lifestyle, and others through medication including insulin. 

General practice data from 2016 - 2017 shows that 13,530 of those adults registered at a practice have a diagnosis of diabetes, amounting to 7.75% of the local population aged 17+, with great variance from practice to practice.

Evidence shows that those with Type 2 diabetes who attend diabetes education have improved biomedical outcomes (such as HbA1c, weight, cholesterol and blood pressure), improvements in psychosocial outcomes (e.g. quality of life, depression, hypoglycaemia rates) and better behavioural outcomes suggesting that those that attend understand more about their diagnosis and therefore do more to improve their health and well-being.

Luton Adult Services been offering access to DESMOND group education since 2010 and in the last year alone 724 patients with Type 2 diabetes have attended. To support this, and to increase access to information and support we are now proud to announce the launch of MyDESMOND to anyone with Type 2 diabetes across Luton.

MyDESMOND*, developed by the Leicester Diabetes Centre, is an interactive digital programme with the following features:

  • Interactive learning and 8-weekly booster sessions to help increase knowledge and confidence about Type 2 diabetes through a range of videos, quizzes and educational materials
  • The ability to track activity levels and even link up to the Fitbit, GARMIN or Google Fit
  • Add weight, blood pressure, HbA1c, diet and cholesterol info to track progress and changes
  • Set daily and long-term goals
  • There’s the chance to compete with others in the MyDESMOND community on the global leader boards
  • Chat with members of the MyDESMOND community
  • Invite friends and family to join in as well through the ‘Buddies’ feature
  • Ask the Expert – connected to the multi-disciplinary team of the Leicester Diabetes Centre

Fay Westwood – Diabetes Specialist Dietitian, said: “It is hoped that adding MyDESMOND to our portfolio of diabetes education for our patients will go a long way to making a positive difference to the lives of those with Type 2 diabetes. Especially during these uncertain times and when individuals are at home shielding or isolating by sharing clear and concise messages to encourage healthy living along with some innovative features such as the ‘buddies’ and education booster sessions, we hope that those with Type 2 diabetes will reap the benefits.”

Feedback from people who have been using MyDESMOND from across the UK already has been positive; quotes and findings from a recent national survey by the Leicester Diabetes Centre include:

“Interesting with great information I have found it very useful.”
“MyDesmond has turned my life style around for the better.”
“MyDesmond is an excellent reference to allow me to refresh my knowledge in my effort to self-manage my diabetes.”

  • 90% said the information in the site was ‘sufficiently detailed’
  • 83% agreed the ‘programme was easy to use’.
  • 84% agreed that they ‘enjoyed using this programme’.
  • 89% said that the information within the programme was valuable/extremely valuable.
  • 83% found the programme engaging
  • 86% said that they had a ‘better understanding of my condition’ as a result of using MyDESMOND
  • 62% reported they were more active and 77% changed their diet as a result of using MyDESMOND

If you are interested in getting access to MyDESMOND, please contact the team on 0333 405 3185 or email:  ccs-tr.diabetesLuton@nhs.net

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