‘Successful’ hypo pilot in Cornwall to be extended

By Editor
24th August 2017
Care planning

A successful pilot developed by a hospital to improve patient outcomes following hypoglycaemia has secured further funding and is to be rolled out elsewhere.

The Hypoglycaemia Care Label Pilot was initially created by the Cornwall Foundation Trust Partnership Diabetes Specialist Nurse Inpatient team who provide an inreach service to the Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust. The aim was  to raise awareness of correct hypo treatments, improve compliance with the trust’s hypo guideline algorithm and documentation of the hypo episode, treatment and management.

One of the main outcomes from a previous hypoglycemia project ran on the same pilot ward that reviewed nursing practice surrounding identification and treatment of hypo episodes, was to devise a hypo care label which could be placed into the nursing notes and help with  prompt and correct treatment of hypoglyceamia

Since the Hypo Care Label was created and introduced, funding has since been secured from NHS England for a year’s secondment diabetes specialist in patient nurse. The initiative is now being rolled out across a further four wards within the trust over a 12-month period.  

The pilot was initially planned to run for three months, but it was extended to six months due to low numbers of hypo events in order to gain meaningful data and outcomes. During the extended time period, 15 hypo events were identified.

An educational intervention was initiated in month four, which was requested by the ward manager on the pilot ward due to the number of Incident forms being completed due to inappropriate hypo management.

A DISN visited the pilot ward at morning handover for half an hour over a one week period. Use of the Hypo Care Label and the Trust’s hypo guideline algorithm was discussed along with general diabetes questions. This captured the majority of staff and a register of attendance was kept. The aim was to improve compliance with use of the Hypo Care Label, and increase staff knowledge on hypo management.

Because of the continual focus, commons themes were often discovered such as incorrect hypoglycaemia treatment quantities used and nursing documentation surrounding hypo events not being well enough documented.

The successful intervention saw hypo management outcomes improved via increased compliance with use of the Hypo Care Label as well as correct treatment and management of hypoglyceamia. The number of incident forms being completed due to inappropriate hypo management decreased substantially. Additionally positive changes to practice where made at ward level eg Orange juice to be placed into the medicines fridge and labelled for Hypo treatment. This will aid access to correct treatment choice and quantity for future management.

Click here to view the Hypoglycaemia Care Label Pilot.

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