National Diabetes Strategy Mandated by the Minister for Health

A long-awaited day for the diabetes community in Ireland

The Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly TD, welcomed the first meeting of the Diabetes Policy and Services Review Group, established by him earlier this week.


“Diabetes is a major health challenge for our population, and managing Diabetes is a major challenge for our health services” – said Minister Donnelly. “I have mandated the establishment of the Diabetes Policy and Services Review, so we can improve patient outcomes, minimise the health complications associated with diabetes, and ensure that our health services are best organized to provide the patient care and support needed by people living with diabetes.”


Professor Derek O’Keeffe, HSE National Clinical Lead for Diabetes welcomed the review group members who gathered in the Department of Health on the 3rd of July 2024 and provided an overview of current diabetes care systems. “I am delighted to chair this Diabetes Strategy 2030, which has a wonderful multidisciplinary group of stakeholders including people with diabetes, diabetes advocates, clinicians and management professionals, all of whom will work collaboratively to build a better tomorrow for diabetes care in Ireland” – Professor O’Keeffe said.



Mr Kieran O’Leary, CEO of Diabetes Ireland outlined the importance of this review to the group by saying: “We have never had a National Diabetes Strategy providing us with the vision, leadership and a forward-looking plan that provides optimum care for every person living with diabetes in Ireland. We have four people living with diabetes here today who – when making your various decisions – I want you to think about first by putting them in the centre of your thought process. Our goal has to be to develop a strategy that will fully meet their needs, is resourced to do so and is fundable.”


Mr. O’Leary continued: “For the first time, we now have an opportunity to develop a plan for diabetes that sits within the new HSE structures but is much more efficient and effective in ensuring it meets the needs of the diabetes community – both people with diabetes and the healthcare professionals providing our care. For Diabetes Ireland, this is probably the most important initiative we have been involved in since we fought to have diabetes added to the Long-Term Illness scheme in the late 60s – early 70s” he said.


Approximately 300,000 people in Ireland are estimated to be living with Diabetes, and it is the most prevalent chronic condition in those aged 45 – 75. The Diabetes Policy and Services Review is charged with providing a report to the Minister within six months identifying gaps and weaknesses in current diabetes services and a set of actions and a plan to improve service delivery and patient outcomes. The Steering Group leading the Review, which includes representatives of the Department of Health, the HSE and Diabetes Ireland, has already met several times. The final document should be published following the review and set out a roadmap for excellence in diabetes care provision by 2030 in Ireland.


Dr Kate Gajewska, Clinical Manager for Advocacy and Research, Diabetes Ireland commented: “We are thrilled to see all the key stakeholders, people living with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, parents and carers, clinical leads, multidisciplinary diabetes team members, representatives of associated organisations and researchers working together on a long-term plan to make diabetes care accessible and reliable for everyone living with diabetes in Ireland. We are very pleased to see that all the advocacy work undertaken in previous years, Pre-Budget Submissions written together with our Diabetes Ireland Advocacy Group, and current and former National Clinical Leads in diabetes, the work of the Cross-Parliamentary group on diabetes led by Mr Cormac Devlin TD, the hundreds of Parliamentary Questions asked by Oireachtas members on behalf of people living with diabetes and their carers, finally come to fruition” – said Dr Gajewska.


We would like to thank all our supporters – all those who sent their parliamentary questions, who raised their voices, contacted their TDs and senators, and all those who fought and still fight together for better services, access to care, technology and medicines. We hope that the outcome of this Diabetes Policy and Services Review provides equal access to quality diabetes care to all – no matter the type, age, geographic location or socio-economic status in Ireland.


For more information, please see the press release from the Department of Health,


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