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This advertorial is fully sponsored by Eli Lilly & Company

Shannon Rush

Lilly Diabetes Business Unit Leader, UK, Republic of Ireland and Nordic Countries

When reflecting on 2020, our minds will of course first recall the challenges of COVID-19 – the pandemic that tragically impacted our society, our friends and our families. But in years to come, perhaps we might also acknowledge the sea-change COVID-19 brought to the way we live and work. Which changes will “stick” is yet to be seen, but I take heart from how working through the pandemic together has strengthened communities, driving us to think differently and work collectively for a better future.

Creating capacity to treat COVID-19 forced rapid change to the way NHS care is delivered. With healthcare professionals (HCPs) stepping away from their usual roles to join front-line efforts, an immense strain was placed on primary and secondary care, disrupting much-needed services for people living with long-term conditions, such as cancer and diabetes.

We listened to doctors and nurses who specialise in treating the 4.7 million people living with diabetes in the UK, to understand the pressures they face and how we could help keep diabetes services on track. At Lilly, we accelerated plans to deliver digital education and tools to support diabetes services, co-created a predictive population health data tool to help improve outcomes for people living with diabetes, and are working to create a personalised diabetes management system that will integrate connected devices, software and analytics.

By 2030, it’s estimated one in four hospital beds in England will be occupied by someone with diabetes. Working together to realise the potential of digital health solutions, we have the opportunity to change that.

By 2030, it’s estimated one in four hospital beds in England will be occupied by someone with diabetes.

Supporting diabetes services with online solutions

Lilly’s medical education professionals created a series of online webinars and videos on how to optimise treatment and deliver effective care digitally. Virtual appointments have become the ‘new normal’, with more than 99% of GP practices adopting remote consultation platforms and technology. Delivering care for people with long-term conditions, without seeing them in person, is critical to protecting those most vulnerable to COVID-19.

The number one topic HCPs asked for was training on updated “sick day rules” – guidelines for people with diabetes who become unwell and how to manage their treatment and prevent hypoglycaemic (low blood sugar) events. Our webinars offered targeted, bite-size training, helping upskill more than 1,000 HCPs to deliver care remotely.

Population health solutions to improve diabetes outcomes

Working together with a team of experts from NHS Devon CCG and supported by Kernow CCG, we co-created PARM (ProActive Register Management) Diabetes, a population health management tool that has the potential to transform the way diabetes care is delivered.

The tool organises practice-level patient data to show how well patients are managing their condition, identify any potential issues as well as those who need critical or urgent attention, and can predict who may need input from a diabetes specialist in the future. This helps ensure people with diabetes are going to receive optimal care and helps practices allocate their resources where they are most needed. We’ve also made this tool work alongside NHS systems to ensure patients’ data never leaves their GP’s practice.

Personalised technology to help people manage their diabetes

For me, the most exciting digital health innovation is building technology that can help people manage their diabetes. That’s why we are working on developing a personalised diabetes management system that integrates connected devices, software and analytics. Our goal is to create one place where people with diabetes and their healthcare providers can access their personal data and actionable insights, to help enable better conversations and more personalised treatment plans.

Lilly has a 100-year history of leading the way in diabetes management. As digital health changes the way healthcare is delivered, we’re embracing the change and it’s my hope that the solutions we are building today, will deliver better health outcomes for people living with diabetes tomorrow.

Find out more about Lilly at lilly.co.uk

“As a commissioner, working in partnership with Lilly on this project has been beneficial in so many ways. Initially, it has provided us with an innovative idea and new approach for population health management not considered previously.
The PARM Diabetes tool has transformed diabetes care locally and has become an essential tool for improving diabetes treatment targets. Regardless of GP clinical system used and without the need for any external data extraction, it enables a real-time view of the T2DM population. The tool also supports clinician education by targeting and prioritising patients for review and intervention, which improves knowledge and confidence in diabetes management within primary care and reduces clinical inertia.”

Nicola Lant, Commissioning Support Manager, Devon CCG

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