CSG member Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust recently held a Diabetes Awareness Day to raise understanding of the condition as part of an ongoing five-year programme to closely combine physical and mental healthcare.
Around 12 C&I service users who have psychosis and get regular support and care at the Southwood Smith Centre, Islington, along with 40 other service users with mental health charity Mind tucked in to the “diabetes-friendly” menu of foods prepared by the TV chef, Oliver Rowe.
C&I’s Integrated Practice Unit programme is aimed at reducing the premature age at which those with serious mental health conditions die. A key contributor is type 2 diabetes, which is two to three times more prevalent in this group than the general population. Addressing this health inequality gap is one of the key priorities set out in the Five Year Forward View for Mental Health - ensuring that people with mental health problems who are at greater risk of poor physical health get access to prevention and screening programmes.
Fiona Felgate, an Occupational Therapist with the Recovery Team at C&I, who organised the event held in partnership with Mind, said: “With the prevalence of type 2 diabetes higher in people with psychosis than the general population, it is crucial that we support service users to gain a better understanding of how to prevent the risk of developing diabetes. Through making some “swaps” in diet from high sugar to low sugar foods a healthier diet can be easier to maintain.”