February newsletter

I am pleased to remind you of our next meeting, which will be in the Education Centre of Kingston at 6.45p.m. on Thursday 18th February. This time the subject will be about recognising and delaying possible routes to amputation – not the happiest of subjects, but one where I feel we are forewarned and can receive help in making this less likely. I am pleased that the session will be led by surgeon Keith Jones, who currently divides his time between St George’s and Kingston Hospitals.

Since our inaugural meeting last October we have has two enormously successful meetings with defined topics. December’s session on exercise involved the Public Health (Get Active) team from Kingston Council and I believe all of us in attendance got a lot more from this than studying booklets or looking up information on the internet.

In January we welcomed Diabetic Specialist Dietician Alison Kelly, who gave a wonderful presentation and answers so many questions from those in attendance.

I am delighted we will be seeing Alison again at our 16th June meeting which is largely intended as a social gathering and will involve a team quiz. All are invited, so please ask friends and family to join us, irrespective of whether or not they have diabetes. This is the only meeting we have planned away from Kingston Hospital and the venue will be the United Reform Church Hall, Cavendish Road, New Malden. It is very close to the Fountain pub bus stop (213 bus is a 24 hour service linking Kingston with Sutton) and parking is available in the Malden Centre within a five minute walk. This is free after 6.30p.m. We are hoping that this event will attract a large group and contribute to fund-raising efforts that are necessary in keeping the Kingston group afloat.

Finally, to finish on some very good news. The very existence of the Diabetes UK Kingston group has certainly influenced the Board of Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust to include a long term strategy for treating and caring for people with diabetes, as confirmed at the Council of Governors meeting held in public in January. We are continuing to work with the diabetic specialists at the hospital, as well as other heads of department to put some further flesh on this planning and to reach the estimated 2,000 people living in Kingston who currently do not know that their health is being adversely effected by having an untreated diabetic condition.

Very much hoping to see you at 6.45p.m. on Thursday 18th February.

Richard Allen