Diabetes Care in Letterkenny University Hospital still unresloved

Despite ongoing efforts by the Donegal branch of Diabetes Ireland to improve adult diabetes services in Letterkenny University Hospital (LUH), the critical situation remains unresolved with little or no engagement by the government and the HSE.


No solutions have yet been found to solve the situation. Although multiple Parliamentary Questions were asked by local TDs, the replies are not satisfactory and don’t suggest any solutions for more than 500 adults with type 1 diabetes receiving diabetes care in Donegal.


Of the 522 adults attending LUH, 387 are currently awaiting a review appointment. Of those waiting, 236 are waiting for less than 6 months (61%). Almost 40% wait for much longer (112 people up to 2 years, and 39 even longer than that), which means that the clinical guidelines recommendations for adults with type 1 diabetes from 2018 are not being met (diabetes review appointment bi-annually, every 6 months).


These delays are directly associated with the lack of staffing and under-resourced diabetes team in LUH. Although multiple consultant posts are approved, there is currently only one consultant endocrinologist privately contracted for 12 hours per week to provide outpatient diabetes services.


The Donegal Branch of Diabetes Ireland hopes to meet the Minister for Health and the HSE as soon as possible to tackle these inequalities in accessing diabetes care in Donegal. The Branch has suggested having consultant endocrinologists from Galway provide some temporary outreach outpatient diabetes satellite clinics for adult patients with Type 1 diabetes which will help alleviate the situation there until the vacant posts are filled. Hopefully, a meeting with the HSE might shed some further light on the suggestion.


See more on this topic: https://www.diabetes.ie/diabetes-ireland-donegal-branch-challenges-the-taoiseach-simon-harris-to-repair-broken-promises-to-improve-the-diabetes-services-in-letterkenny-university-hospital/