Trailblazers learn how to make a difference for diabetes patients

The first group of participants on the programme, hoping to make a difference to people with diabetes

The first group of participants on the programme, hoping to make a difference to people with diabetes

The West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN) has launched a brand new programme which aims to radically change care for people in the West Midlands who have diabetes.
The “Making a difference to people with diabetes through medicines optimisation” programme aims to bring together a community of like-minded, passionate people to share and spread ideas related to improving the lives of people in the West Midlands with diabetes.
The programme, which is supported by WMAHSN and Health Education West Midlands (HEWM), also benefits from joint working with Daiichi Sankyo UK Ltd, Eli Lilly and Company Ltd and Novo Nordisk Ltd.
The programme launched earlier this month, when the first cohort of participants gathered to undertake the inaugural two day workshop. Attendees learned new ways of thinking about how to make a difference and planned how to work together to engage 500 people to make 1,000 differences to people with diabetes. These ‘differences’ can be anything from reducing carbohydrate intake to discovering a cure, and everything in between.
Lucy Chatwin, Head of Programmes at the WMAHSN, explained: “Seventeen trailblazers came to the first ever event, bringing passion and an open mind, ideas and a desire to make a difference. In a very short time, the group had come up with more than 170 proposals, large and small, which have the potential to make a real change to the lives of patients with diabetes.”
The event was just the first in a series that WMAHSN and HEWM are rolling out across the region, and there is an open invitation to join the programme.
Participants are supported with a comprehensive support package, comprising:

  • Access to a virtual community of difference makers
  • Online resources
  • Regular and local support
  • Webinars
  • Library of resources
  • High quality support materials
  • Networking opportunities
  • Toolkit/resource pack/reference material
  • Achievable challenges.

Jenny Price, Head of Innovation at Health Education West Midlands, which is responsible for the education and training of health and public health workers across the region, said: “We are looking for people who want to think differently and make a difference for people with diabetes, and share and spread ideas in a growing group. The benefits of being involved include personal development, both inside and outside of work, increased personal productivity and improved effectiveness. The programme allows groups taking part to renew their enthusiasm, unlock their potential and together, celebrate successes and the differences they can make for diabetes patients.
If you would like to get involved with the making a difference to people with diabetes programme, please contact Lucy at lucy.chatwin@wmahsn.org and Jenny at jenny.price@wm.hee.nhs.uk.