Services slashed for children with Type 1 Diabetes at St Luke's Hospital

Mary Cody

Reporter:

Mary Cody

Email:

mary.cody@kilkennypeople.ie

St Luke's Hospital.

St Luke's Hospital.

The Mayor of Kilkenny, Peter Chap Cleere has expressed his severe disappointment and said that he is deeply frustrated that from July 15, St Luke’s Hospital will impose serious restrictions on children with Type 1 diabetes  in the region. 

This paediatric diabetes team in St Luke’s Hospital have recently met with the hospital manager due to lack of resources being made available and have unfortunately received no assurances that more nurses or dietician hours will be provided. According to a letter sent to parents of affected children as direct result of this, the team have been left with absolutely no option but to restrict and reduce its current services. 

Cllr Chap Cleere commented “The paediatric diabetes team in St Luke’s Hospital have provided an absolutely outstanding service to date to both patients and their families. My family and I have experience first hand the commitment, care and dedication that the team have provided over the last couple of years in particular” However, Cllr Cleere has informed the Kilkenny People that “they don’t have the required Diabetes nursing services or dietician hours to continue to provide the level of service that has been provided to date”

As a direct result there are some serious cuts to existing services that will have to be imposed. 

All patients will be transferred to the adult services after their 16th birthday rather than their 18th birthday as it currently stands. No new patients can be followed up by the paediatric diabetes team but will be referred elsewhere for ongoing outpatient education and management 
Other cuts include no more patients will be commenced on insulin pumps, CHOICE structured educational programs will be discontinued and the monthly Paediatric Diabetes Clinic will be discontinued. Furthermore the joint Diabetes Nurse and dietician clinics will be discontinued.
The Diabetes Nurse  clinics will be reduced to two mornings per week and telephone access and advice with the Diabetes Nurse will now only be available 8am-9am Tuesday and Wednesday mornings only.

Cllr Cleere commented that it was” inexcusable that the necessary and adequate funding has not been provided for. This is just another example of the HSE treating the most vulnerable in our society with complete disregard. The young children of Kilkenny and surrounding counties deserve better”

Cleere concluded by saying that he “has written to Minister Harris looking for an explanation and for the rationale as to why this vital cut in services is being allowed happen on his watch. It is my intention to meet with Minister Harris in the coming weeks to restore these vital services”.