DSN Spotlight – Geri Gray
The role of the diabetes specialist nurse is hugely important in ensuring high-quality diabetes care. Our DSN Spotlight series celebrates this great position and also aims to find out more about those who are making a difference to people with diabetes every day.
Name: Geri Gray
Job title: Community Diabetes Specialist Nurse and employed by UHL
Time in position: In the post now for 12 years (ahh!!)
What’s your biggest challenge in diabetes today?
The armoury of treatments now available means so many options which on one side is great, however this can be a challenge in being aware of the limitations/contraindication some therapies come with. Part of my clinical role means supporting and mentoring staff in primary care and ensuring that they feel confident to use these new therapies, as well as keeping them in touch with new agents.
What’s been your biggest achievement in diabetes care?
Supporting and working with primary care staff, in the main practice nurses in delivering group education for patients on injectable therapies. Piloting and then rolling out the Injectable Toolkit.
What would you like to see change in diabetes?
New ways of working particularly in primary care settings. The up-skilling staff allowing skill mix to occur. This would ultimately improve patient access to the most appropriate member of the Primary health care team. A better use of resource will improve the experience for the person with diabetes.
What’s been the biggest development in the last 10 years?
Access to information both for healthcare professionals and patients through the use of online elearning, POD casts and webinars. There is a vast amount of information and support that backs up face to face training.
What is the best way to achieve good health outcomes with your patients?
This would centre on good consultation skills that are delivered at every contact, in the main listening to patients and discovering what they are really saying, allowing them time to express their real concerns. Time can be the biggest barrier but if well spent would have a huge impact on outcomes.