Transforming care for people with diabetes

PhD project title and outline, including interdisciplinary dimension:
Transforming care for people with diabetes

There are 3.5 million people living with diabetes in the UK. It is accepted generally that health systems tend to be too acute-centric and that there is a need for system reorientation towards a chronic care model of provision. This reorientation is fundamental to the successful implementation of the Northern Ireland Diabetes Strategic Framework (2016) which aims to transform services for people with diabetes through co-production and co-design. The proposed PhD will employ the emerging investigative methods of improvement and implementation science to evaluate local strategies and initiatives to achieve this reorientation and to enhance the quality of care for people with diabetes. The main aim of the PhD project is to evaluate the impact of the Network Board (responsible for delivery of the Framework) on achieving the outcomes set out in the Framework. We will focus on one or two specific areas of the Framework e.g. Diabetes Structured Education (DSE), and evaluate its impact on key indicators (e.g. number of people receiving diabetes education) pre and post implementation. We will also describe the activities and processes involved and identify barriers and facilitators of change. We will look at the impact of local contextual factors (such as readiness for change, local expertise, experience of quality improvement, resources etc) on outcomes, by comparing implementation in two local healthcare trusts in Northern Ireland. Health systems and health services research is a necessarily interdisciplinary activity and the PhD student will benefit from the rich mix of interdisciplinary expertise that exists in the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences at QUB, and with our external partners, principally Diabetes UK and its international counterparts, the NI Department of Health, provider Trusts, the Public Health Agency and other key stakeholders in diabetes care from the community and voluntary sectors.

Primary supervisor: Dr Noleen McCorry (Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences)
Secondary supervisor: Professor Michael Donnelly (Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences)
External Partner/Organisation: Diabetes UK