Gwen Scott grant 2018 – success stories

Gwen Scott grant 2018 – Diabetes Victoria
Gwen Scott grant 2018

Success stories

Bianca KellyBianca Kelly developed a passion for diabetes through her work in critical care at Wimmera Health Care Group. Bianca applied for a Graduate Certificate of Diabetes Education so that she could help patients living with diabetes to improve their self-management at home.

What did you receive your grant for?

“I received the Gwen Scott grant for a Graduate Certificate of Diabetes Education that I completed through Deakin University. This grant has allowed me to implement education sessions on diabetes at my workplace, the Emergency Department at Wimmera Health Care Group, Horsham Campus. My aim is to use these education sessions to increase my work colleagues’ diabetes knowledge, and update them with best practice principles for dealing with emergency situations to do with diabetes. Another focus on receiving this grant and completing the Graduate Certificate was to educate my patients who presented to the Emergency Department. Now, I am able to teach them better ways to manage their diabetes, as well as implementing services that they require, such as linking them with diabetes educators for long term management.”

How has the grant helped to increase your knowledge about diabetes?

“The Graduate Certificate in Diabetes Education has allowed me to link pathophysiology and management of diabetes and how all of the body systems intertwine to deal with diabetes. After completing my Graduate Certificate, I have been able to run education sessions on all aspects of diabetes and management required in the Emergency Department. These sessions have allowed me to understand diabetes from many different perspectives, as everyone learns differently and in order to educate someone I need to understand how to teach people from differing backgrounds.”

How has the grant helped your career?

“Prior to my completion of the Graduate Certificate of Diabetes Education I was very fortunate to gain a permanent part time position in diabetes education at Wimmera Health Care Group at Horsham Campus. I have been involved in multiple paediatric outreach clinics run by the Royal Children's Hospital which reviews children with type 1 diabetes every 3 months. I have been involved in reviewing patients who are admitted on the wards and providing support to nurses and medical staff in regards to diabetes management. I am currently working on becoming a credentialled diabetes educator.”
Stephanie Acosta saw a need for more credentialled diabetes educators to help cover the needs at Swan Hill District Health where the rate of diabetes complications admissions was one of the highest in Victoria.

Stephanie applied to attend the ADS-ADEA Annual Scientific Meeting to earn CPD points towards becoming a credentialled diabetes educator.

How has the grant helped to increase your knowledge about diabetes?

“The conference exposed me to the most current evidence in diabetes practice as well as the most recent research areas and studies being completed in the area of diabetes. Being able to visit all the different reps in the one place also exposed me to other aspects of diabetes care, such as the most current technology available.

In addition, the amount of information I covered over the three days would be quite difficult to access otherwise, as we do not have many diabetes professional development opportunities locally.”

How has the grant helped your career?

“Attending the ADEA conference allowed me to meet and network amongst other professionals that work in the area of diabetes, which is geographically difficult to do from Swan Hill. I was able to build relationships with peers that I have since being able to utilise for support.

This is important as we do not have an endocrinologist or a large team who specialise in diabetes here at the hospital; having contacts who you can liaise with outside of the hospital, who may have more experience in certain areas of diabetes care, can been crucial at times and their input can result in providing a better level of care to patients here at Swan Hill District Health.

Last but not least, attending the conference also allowed me to meet my ADEA mentor Rachel Freeman, face to face, instead of our usual Skype sessions as we work in different states. Rachel has been providing me with valuable support and encouragement during my initial credentialling phase as a diabetes educator and it was an honour to finally meet her.
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