Improving care for people with diabetes: A population approach to prevention and control

Diabetes is a common, disabling and deadly condition. In Ireland it is estimated that nearly 1 in 10 adults have diabetes, many of whom are undiagnosed. Currently diabetes costs the state approx. €580 million per annum and this will rise significantly in coming decades. Major changes are underway with a move to providing more care of diabetes in primary care. The National Clinical Programme for Diabetes (NCPD) was established in 2010 to 'ascertain and reduce the prevalence of diabetes in Ireland and to reduce the burden of diabetes on both affected individuals and the State by reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with Diabetes'. However the focus of the NCPD is on the reorganisation of services and it does not have the capacity to undertake research. The rationale of the proposed partnership between the NCPD and UCC and led by Dr. Kearney is based on a shared vision to improve care for people with diabetes in Ireland and to reduce the preventable economic and societal burden of diabetes. 
Data from existing studies will be used to determine the prevalence of diabetes and to provide a dynamic evidence base of trends in the incidence of diabetes and diabetes-related complications and associated healthcare utilization costs. A process evaluation of the implementation of the NCPD will be undertaken with the use of interviews and documentary analysis to determine barriers and facilitators to change in the Irish health system. A feasible lifestyle intervention will be developed to prevent diabetes.
This partnership between the highest levels of academia and service provision in Public Health in Ireland is ideally positioned to ensure the research is undertaken with academic rigor and will translate directly into policy and service delivery. Ultimately the impact of the programme will be to reduce the clinical, financial and societal burden of diabetes.

Award Date
22 March 2013
Award Value
Principal Investigator
Professor Patricia Kearney
Host Institution
University College Cork
Research Leader Awards