A campaign to reduce insulin errors in hospitals has been taking place across the UK and Ireland this week.

A total of 531 sites, mainly hospitals but also some GP surgeries and care homes, have taken part in the annual Insulin Safety Week, which started on Monday 20 May and runs until Sunday 26 May.

The diabetes team at East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust led by Diabetes Specialist Nurse Erwin Castro created a special music video to mark the occasion.

Other teams have been staging a host of activities, including running education sessions for NHS staff and organising stands in hospital receptions.

They have put up posters, blown up balloons and worn t-shirts all with the message ‘choose safety, think insulin’, as well as giving out leaflets. Additionally, the message ‘right insulin, right dose, right time, right route, right device, right patient’ has also been the heart of the campaign.

The week has been organised in response the high numbers of insulin errors which occur in hospitals. Findings from the latest National Diabetes Inpatient Audit show 40% of people with diabetes experience an error related to the administration of insulin during a hospital stay.

Insulin Safety Week began in 2017, with local campaigns being staged in Leicester, Eastbourne Southampton and Hastings. This year is the second year the seven-day campaign has run nationally, with 343 sites having participated in the inaugural national Insulin Safety Week in May 2018.

Last year, the Inpatients Diabetes Team at Hull and East Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust won the Insulin Safety Week Excellence Award for a rendition of a Dua Lipa song, with new words conveying the message of insulin safety. The team came up with its own version of the hit-song ‘New Rules’ named ‘Insulin Rules’.

Insulin Safety Week has been funded by Sanofi. The company has had no input into any of the campaign’s arrangements or content.

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