Lancs educational team claims prestigious prize

The team work with people with Type 2 diabetes.
The team work with people with Type 2 diabetes.

A Lancastrian educational team who work with people with Type 2 diabetes has been awarded ‘Educator of the Year’ and the 'Innovation Award' at the prestigious Celebrating DESMOND Awards 2016.

The Lancashire Care Foundation Trust - which delivers structured education courses for Type 2 diabetes called DESMOND in Central and North Lancashire, Fylde and Wyre, and Blackpool - has been presented with the ‘innovation prize’ in the Celebrating DESMOND Awards 2016.

The team’s Diabetes Nurse Educator, in charge of delivering the education programme for people with Type 2 diabetes in Preston, has also scooped the prestigious title as ‘Educator of the Year’ for her “enthusiasm and commitment” to her work.

Susan Latham has worked as a nurse in the NHS for almost 50 years, including 16 years supporting diabetes patient education and 10 years as a DESMOND educator serving central Lancashire.

Susan was nominated by her colleagues, including Christine Elwell, a Professional Lead Dietician and Diabetes Education Quality Lead, who said: “Susan has supported 1000’s of people and their carers to take their first steps in self-managing their diabetes.

“She understands that people can often need extra encouragement and confidence to attend group sessions and has an ability to evaluate how to support people from the moment they walk through the door of the education room.”

The past 12 months has seen the expansion of DESMOND programme across North Lancashire and Susan has worked extra days and been on hand to share her expertise and offer support to the team of health professionals and lay educators.

On nominating Susan, her colleagues said: “Her enthusiasm and commitment to the DESMOND programme over the years and her trust in the principles on which it is built is something to be proud of.”

The 'Innovation Award' was given for the team’s commitment to expanding the course by taking the course to hard-to-reach areas including an open prison and providing sign language interpretation for the deaf and resources for the partially sighted and registered blind.

Bernie Stribling, national director of the DESMOND Programme, said: “The standard was high with a degree of excellence demonstrated by many of the entries. However, Susan and the rest of the Lancashire Care Foundation Trust, showed ‘star quality’ and a dedicated commitment to DESMOND.

“It was clear that DESMOND is making a difference to the lives of people with, and at risk of, Type 2 diabetes in Lancashire, with the whole team going above and beyond in delivering the DESMOND Programme.”