Sheffield hospitals praised for diabetes in pregnancy scheme

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals has been praised for helping women with diabetes improve health during pregnancy.

Tuesday, 8th December 2020, 1:42 pm

Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust has been highly commended after helping more women with diabetes better manage their care needs before becoming pregnant and reducing their risk of diabetes-related pregnancy complications.

The ‘Improving pre-pregnancy care for women with diabetes: a community focused strategy’ saw uptake of a daily folic acid supplement among women with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes soar to nearly 50 per cent just before the pandemic. This compares to 22 per cent in 2018, a figure which had remained more or less static since 2014.

The project was led by Dr Soon Song, Consultant Physician and Diabetologist at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals, and was one of three entries shortlisted in the annual PrescQIPP Innovation Awards’ Working Across Integrated Care Systems category. The awards are open to health care organisations across the country.

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Thoughtful pregnant woman looks out the window home.

Dr Soon Song, Consultant Physician and Diabetologist at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals and Diabetes UK Clinical Champion, said: “We are delighted to have received this prestigious national award which is excellent recognition of how we transcended medical boundaries in primary and secondary care for the benefit of women living with diabetes.

“The steps to improving pre-pregnancy care in women with diabetes are very simple, and with prevalence of diabetes rising in younger women who are of a child-bearing age, it was important that this novel approach was taken. We encourage all women to look after their health and that of their unborn child by taking the recommended daily dose of folic acid.”

As well as arranging meetings with community pharmacists, regular three-monthly reminders were also sent to highlight the importance of pre-pregnancy care. Patient information leaflets and a safety checklist were also developed. This information was then incorporated into the electronic system used by GP practices

The work was chosen to be presented at the National Diabetes in Pregnancy UK Conference in November 2019 and published in Diabetic Medicine in July 2020.