Head of the programme: Prof. MUDr. Alexandra Jirkovská, CSc.
The World Health Organization has recognised education as the “cornerstone of the therapy of diabetes, necessary for inclusion of diabetic patients in the society”. Diabetic patients must be educated in independent control when their diabetic disease is detected and also at any time later when needed.
According to the National Diabetes Programme formulated by the Czech Diabetes Society (www.diab.cz), good-qualityand specialised education of patients including self-monitoring is the core of diabetes therapy.
It is necessary to realise that diabetes cannot be cured, and although not causing immediate problems, even its “mild” progression may result in later vascular complications. On the other hand, precisely the adherence to the therapeutic regimen and self-monitoring of glycaemia, together with proper modifications of the therapy, not only increases the self-confidence of diabetic patients, but it also shortens their stay in hospitals, reduces the occurrence of sudden decompensation of diabetes (i.e. increased hyperglycaemia or hypoglycaemia values) and also, for example, the number of lower limb amputations.
Education of the diabetic patient (and their family members as appropriate) is defined as a process that reinforces the knowledge, skills and abilities of the patient necessary for independent care of the disease and for active cooperation with healthcare professionals. Education should also include a psychological intervention because emotional well-being is associated with good results of diabetes treatment.
Education therefore helps diabetic patients to:
- Manage their diabetes better and assume a larger portion of responsibility for their own health;
- Better cooperate with the healthcare team.
The purpose of education is to:
1. Improve the quality of life of diabetic patients and their independent management and control of diabetes;
2. Improve diabetes control assessed according to the glycated haemoglobin (HbA1c) levels;
3. Reduce acute complications of diabetes, i.e. severe conditions of hypoglycaemia and hyperglycaemia with ketoacidosis;
4. Prevent late complications, i.e. involvement of the legs, eyes, kidneys, heart, etc.;
5. Reduce the length of hospital stay for diabetes and its complications;
6. Reduce the consumption of some drugs.
Organisation of education
Education can be implemented in various ways as indicated by the image below, namely:
• During hospitalisation of diabetic patients (for example comprehensive therapeutic and educational courses, individual education);
• In the outpatient form (individual or group education, for example, a day care centre);
• In the form of individual education at the outpatient office and in the form of visits in families;
• By phone or using another form of electronic communication (e-mail, social networks, etc.);
• During fitness stays (for example stays organised by organisations of diabetic patients);
• In the spa.
Education provided at the Diabetology Centre is managed by the team of doctors and nurses trained in this field.