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Diabetes Group, March 2017
Moving from pediatric care to adult medical care can be a bumpy transition for anyone and many people stop regularly seeing their doctors between the ages of 18 and 25. For healthy individuals this is not a cause for concern however for those living with chronic illness it is essential to their long term health that they continue their medical care.
With this in mind we were very happy London Health Sciences Centre approached us to create a tool that would help youth with type 1 diabetes transition from pediatric to adult services. We worked with youth from the London area, most of whom had already gone through the transition to adult care, to talk about the issues that they had faced during their transition and what would have been helpful to them during this time.
Quote from LHSC article, posted on June 6, 2017, about our Design Studio. Read the full article here or click below to view the pdf version.
Leveraging a unique design studio model, young people have the opportunity to work directly with facilitators, content experts and designers to brainstorm, design and develop tangible projects.
A group of 9 people between the ages of 17 and 26, most of them had already made the transition from pediatric care to adult services. Ruth, Mariam, Nate, Robert, Sarah, Nicole, Mikayla, Jason and Kayla worked with us along with support from the London Health Services Centre.
The group worked together to create tools that would help others start conversations with their doctors and nurses on the topics that are important to people in this age group. Three items were discussed during the weekend:
A series of postcards and business cards that can be taken into appointments to start conversations around less commonly discussed but still very important topics for people in this age range.
A buddy system run through the hospital where people just about to transition would be paired with someone who has already finished transitioning to help them through the process.
A twitter hashtag was chosen where people could post their stories and experiences going into adult care for the first time to help create a sense of community.
The group met over a weekend in March 2017 where they were able to talk through their own experiences and what information would have been useful for them to have at the time. They helped design the business and postcards and discussed what would be needed for the other two ideas. Following this they continued to talk through the ideas on an online forum after the weekend was over, as the final designs for the postcards and business cards came together they offered suggestions for small edits on the resources.
Transitioning to adult care can be difficult for anyone but for those with a chronic condition like type 1 diabetes it is essential that they continue to go see their doctors throughout their lives as there can be long term health implications if they don’t stay on top of their health concerns.