Health, Latest News | Posted: Thursday, August 13th, 2020 at 2:34 pm | return to news

BERTIE gets the key of the diabetes door

It’s a 21st birthday for BERTIE, the Type 1 diabetes education programme which helps patients to manage their condition.

The BERTIE team
The BERTIE team

The structured education programme teaches patients about carbohydrate counting and how to match insulin doses with food, exercise, illness and daily routines to improve glucose levels and feelings of wellbeing. It was launched in 1999 by a team at the Royal Bournemouth Hospital (RBH) and promotes self-management skills rather than telling patients what to do.

The team behind the successful programme, modelled on a similar programme in Germany, has also led training courses for other hospital teams throughout the UK, enabling thousands of patients nationwide to benefit from the training experience.

In 2016, a web based version of BERTIE was redeveloped by the RBH team into Bertieonline.org.uk and this has been accessed by more than 50,000 people worldwide. Used by health professionals and patients alike, its most recent section ‘Streetwise’ provides information and support for younger people and teenagers. There are plans to develop this further to add another section for young children.

Emma Jenkins, specialist diabetes dietician at RBH who helped create BERTIE, said,

“I am so proud of all the teams I have worked with over the years and how we have created a programme that has benefited thousands of people with Type 1 diabetes.

“The future plans are really exciting with the ongoing development of the online programme to include support for children with more digital based education.  This is especially important in current times when face to face care is limited.”

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