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#diabeteschat Blog – DAFNE

DAFNE-UK comes to #diabeteschat town 

What the listeners have to say about DAFNE before we hear from the DAFNE-UK team :

“DAFNE is not just carb counting”

“DAFNE didn’t really benefit me because I already knew how to carb count…only reason I did it was because I wanted a pump”

“Doing DAFNE was when I first learnt about DKA”

“I haven’t done DAFNE yet…I am on the waiting list, which apparently is very long”

“You have to be in right head space when doing DAFNE so you get the most out of it”

“there’s a need to have structured education offered to us even if we have had diabetes for 35 years like me…because over time information around things like carb counting change…so we can all do with re-hashing our diabetes self-management skills like in DAFNE”


Liesl who works with DAFNE-UK is an RN; she was always scared of diabetes, scared of insulin; she would always avoid patients with diabetes…until she was asked to be a ‘link nurse’ with the diabetes centre for what she thought was lunch and a meeting! She realised that she had so little education about diabetes that it scared her…which stimulated her to study more about diabetes…but she still went home thinking she couldn’t learn everything she needed to; but then she went to an observation course with DAFNE; ever since then it “lit a spark that has kept her in diabetes education ever since”

“the more you learn, the more you don’t know…so you have to push further and keep learning”

“biggest challenge for DAFNE has been COVID”

“other challenge is to make DAFNE accessible to all…not just by postcode lottery access”

“I would like people who want structured education to have access to it when they need it and when they want it without having to fight for it” says Liesl

Stew who has done DAFNE when he did DAFNE kept saying “ka-ching” because everything he was hearing and learning was like the penny dropping…he was excited that he could go running again”

Stew emphasises “that one of the biggest things about doing DAFNE is the sitting in same room with others with T1; sharing personal diabetes info was scary; but by the end of the week we were all looking at each other’s BG diaries because we helping each other work out the puzzle together”

“The other thing about DAFNE was I learnt how to correct without going out of target” says Stew

Day 1 was daunting…I’d never talked to another with T1…but suddenly there we were…8 of us talking about T1..and today we still catch up from time to time…whilst things have moved on and most of us have either Flash or pumps, DAFNE principles from years ago remain”

“As a DAFNE educator we are not there to tell what people to do…we are there to provide the evidence based info about how to manage glucose levels…so then the person with diabetes who has done DAFNE can go away to make free informed choices”

“DAFNE puts the person at front and centre of their diabetes management”

“Combo of DAFNE and Flash/CGM drops HbA1C even more than just DAFNE or Flash/CGM alone”

DAFNE Topics : carb counting, sick day management, exercise, eating out, pregnancy, alcohol, employment, annual cycle of care

There is now DAFNE for both pumpers and MDI, both available online and F2F

There is an enormous amount of work being done from policy perspective to empower PwD to self-manage their diabetes if and when hospitalised…which DAFNE is assisting with.

Questions from community :

  1. How easy is it to re-do DAFNE if it’s been so long since last done?

It depends on your local service and their allocated DAFNE funding so some centres offer more refreshers than others whilst some centres offer more first timer courses; if you have done DAFNE in past you can have access to online DAFNE forever (arranged through your prior DAFNE centre)

  1. How do you find your local DAFNE centre?

Head to DAFNE website; select “I have T1”; then click on locating course; then map

  1. If you have done a remote version of DAFNE can we get a physical copy of handbook?

There’s no physical copy other than online version; hard copy new resources for those doing F2F DAFNE; but ask your local DAFNE centre to request if you can have a copy

  1. If you’ve done another version of DAFNE, can you do another one of those?

Speak to you local centre or speak to local DAFNE educator to investigate

  1. When should structured diabetes education like DAFNE be provided?

NICE recommends doing DAFNE at least 6/12 after diagnosis or after honeymoon phase has finished

  1. What’s the point of DAFNE with tech increasing?

If your tech goes wrong then you need to know how to troubleshoot

“Someone’s partner said they got the person they married back the day they did DAFNE not the day they were diagnosed T1”

With DAFNE you get :

  • Peer support
  • Trained health professionals
  • Evidence based education

“It’s your choice where you get your education” says Liesl

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