Healthwatch Walsall and Diabetes UK have teamed up to set up a new Peer Support Group for people living with or affect by Diabetes in Walsall.
The group, which currently meets virtually every two month, was set in response to patient feedback, collected on behalf of the Walsall Together Partnership, calling for more support and advice on managing the condition, medication needs, nutrition and diet information as well as signposting to services.
Each session a specialist joins to talk around a diabetes related subject giving people living with Type 2 diabetes, as well as friends, family and carers the opportunity to learn more about their condition.
There is information sharing about education courses, and other essentials to help people take control and better manage their diabetes on a day-to-day basis. It is also an opportunity for people, especially those who feel alone in their condition, to share their own experiences and learn more from other people in the area.
Aileen Farrer, Manager Healthwatch Walsall said: “We know from talking to people in the community that supporting people living with Diabetes is so important. We got in touch with Diabetes UK and the Specialist Diabetes Nurses at Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust to talk about setting up a peer support group locally. So far it’s been a great success and we look forward to meeting even more people and helping to offer the support that people said they needed.”
Donna Chaloner , Lead for Community Diabetes Services for Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust said “We are really pleased we have been able to set up this group in response to learning more from what matters most to our service users and they have given us really useful insights into how we can help improve care in Walsall. Prevention is a key priority for the Walsall Together partnership and this is a great example of how we are raising awareness of what people can do to better manage their Diabetes and supporting them to learn more about how they can take better care of themselves.
Shaleen Sandhu, Volunteer Coordinator for Diabetes Uk West Midlands, said: “We are really delighted to be working with Healthwatch Walsall and Walsall Together to bring this much-needed diabetes support group to the area. Living with diabetes or supporting someone with the condition every day can be hard at times, but sharing your experiences with others who understand can really help. I encourage anyone who is living with or affected by diabetes in Walsall to join one of the sessions as alongside peer support, they will also offer expert advice on a range of subjects which will help you manage the condition well.”
The next meeting is being held at 11am on 28 July 2021 and will focus on health checks and support services. For more information please contact Healthwatch Walsall on 0800 470 1660 or email firstname.lastname@example.org