Over 120 healthcare professionals with an interest in diabetes attended this 2-day meeting in Athlone, County Westmeath, Ireland. The conference opened with a presentation on the challenges needed to transform diabetes care in Ireland from Professor Richard Firth (Consultant Endocrinologist, Dublin). He outlined many of the difficulties experienced while striving to achieve excellent diabetes care and outlined how a director of quality and clinical care could enhance diabetes care. “Much done and much to do”, he commented.
Delegates then attended workshops on the different insulin regimens, newer oral blood glucose-lowering agents and erectile dysfunction, before having an interesting presentation from Mark Davis (Clinical Psychologist, Belfast) on motivating change in people with diabetes.
The conference dinner was convivial and well attended.
On the Saturday morning Professor Fidelma Dunne (Consultant Endocrinologist, Galway) gave an excellent talk on pregnancy, drawing extensively from her work with ATLANTIC DIP (diabetes in pregnancy), a collaborative initiative along the Irish Atlantic seaboard. This was followed by a John Cleese-inspired talk from Dr John Harty (Consultant Nephrologist, Newry) on ensuring end organ protection.
Delegates then had two workshop rotations on effective foot care, insulin dose adjustment, using blood glucose results and diabetes dietetics, as well as challenging cases in type 2 diabetes.
The meeting ended with a thought-provoking presentation from Dr Sean Dineen (Consultant Endocrinologist, Galway) on the most recent trial evidence for ensuring effective diabetes care. Delegates participated in the plenary sessions throughout the conference with active questions and participation.
Summarising the key learning points from the conference, Dr Colin Kenny commented on how practically based the conference had been with many contemporary areas covered. He thanked his colleagues Tony O’Sullivan (GP, Irishtown) and Nigel Campbell (GP, Lisburn) for their active support, as well as praising the organisation skills of Jane Bishop (All-Ireland Conference Co-ordinator, Dublin).