Depending on your own individual diabetes care needs, your healthcare team can vary considerably in size.
This team will assist you in your diabetes management.
At a very minimum your health team may just be your GP, however you should have access to a range of specialists as and when you need them.
GP – general practitioner
Your GP (general practitioner) is your first point of contact who will be kept updated of any changes in your care and is responsible for prescribing any medicines and supplies you need.
- Read more about your GP
Consultant or diabetologist
Depending on the set up at your medical centre, you may or may not have regular access to a consultant or diabetologist, however, you should have access to one if you have specialist questions that needs a consultant’s advice.
Diabetes specialist nurse – DSN
Diabetes specialist nurses, as the name suggests, are nurses with specialist knowledge of diabetes.
Diabetes specialist nurses play a role in helping and supporting people with diabetes in managing their condition.
Practice nurses play a key and varied role in medical centres.
Practice nurses are trained to deal with a wide range of tasks from treating injuries to performing blood tests and vaccinations.
Pharmacists receive specialist training in a wide variety of medical conditions, medications and treatments. If you have questions about your medication , such as side effects, your pharmacist can advise you.
Optometrist and opthalmologist
The difference between the two is that an ophthalmologist is likely to have a deeper specialist knowledge and will be responsible for any eye surgery that may be needed.
Not everyone with diabetes will see a podiatrist as basic foot checks can be performed by other healthcare staff. If you need to see a specialist for your feet, it will be a podiatrist that you see.
A dietitian is a specialist in food and nutrition who can help to advise you on the content and structure of your diet.
Read more about a diabetes diet
If you are having emotional or psychological issues that are affecting your life, you should have access to see a psychologist who will be able to give you support.
Other specialist consultants
If you develop complications , you may need to see a specialist in the relevant area of care.
To help ensure that your care is appropriate, you can ask for a care plan to be drawn up either before your visit or during it.