Two thousand children and young people with Type 1 Diabetes will receive support from an innovative new app to help manage their condition, thanks to a grant of £42,000 from Leicestershire & Rutland Freemasons to the Leicester Hospitals Charity.
The new mobile education app, known as DEAPP, has been developed by the Children’s Research Centre, and aims to educate patients and families through 12 creative and engaging learning sessions which can be played through a smart phone, a tablet or a PC.
The app provides instant access to on-line information whenever required, without needing to wait for medical appointments. It is already in use in 28 hospitals across England and Wales, and plans are in place to roll it out to every hospital in England and Wales by 2022.
The Freemasons’ grant will allow the app to be adapted to help patients and families from black and ethnic minorities, where English is not the main language spoken, or for families of patients with learning disabilities. This will be achieved by adding additional modules and components to DEAPP to help provide relevant information to these patients and their families, ensuring that all children diagnosed can have equal access to high-quality education about Type 1 Diabetes as they begin their lifelong management of the condition.
The aim is to translate the app into Welsh, Somali, Punjabi and Urdu. Beyond that, DEAPP will be developed to focus on resources for over-16s, specifically in terms of health and wellbeing, dealing with mental health, risk taking behaviour and how this impacts on a young person’s diabetes.
Type 1 Diabetes which can cause serious health challenges as it is 4.5 times more likely for these young children to experience heart failure and 3.5 times more likely to experience stroke later in life. Around 33,000 children under 19 are living with Type 1 Diabetes in the UK, with 3,000 children diagnosed each year. This is growing at an alarming rate of 4 per cent a year, particularly with children under the age of five. There are currently 375 children aged 0–16, in Leicestershire & Rutland, with Type 1 Diabetes, along with 15 children with Type 2 Diabetes.
Approximately 85 per cent of people diagnosed have no family history of the condition, and it is a major priority to educate families as well as children in Leicester Hospitals Charity.
The grant from Leicestershire & Rutland Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales.
Lisa Davies at Leicester Hospitals Charity said:
“We’re very grateful for the generous grant from Leicestershire & Rutland Freemasons which is making a big difference to the care of children being treated for Type 1 Diabetes in Leicester’s Hospitals. It’s clear that in future it’ll make a huge contribution to the lives of these children and their families.”
Peter Kinder from Leicestershire & Rutland Freemasons said:
“I’m very pleased we’ve been able to help Leicester Hospitals Charity with their hugely important work. There are 48 thousand people, of all ages with diabetes in Leicestershire alone and we’re delighted that all children diagnosed can use this app to obtain high-quality education about Type 1 Diabetes as they begin their lifelong management of the condition.”