MEDIA RELEASES

Bay of Islands Hospital staff support young people with diabetes

More than 400 people turned out to support the 2015 Diabetes Fun Run and Walk event on November 11 including a big contingent from Bay of Islands Hospital.

Hosted by Diabetes NZ Northland and supported by Northland DHB the event raises funds for the annual Diabetes and Healthy Lifestyle Camp for 16 to 25-year-olds and from next year, will also support the kids’ camp for seven to 12-year-olds.

These camps are run nationally by specialist diabetes services attached to district health boards and have been provided in Northland for a number of years. However, a change in funding meant that from last year, Diabetes NZ Northland Branch and Northland DHB Diabetes Service have had to find new options to fund the camps, and the Diabetes Fun Run & Walk was the solution.

The camps help the children and young people with diabetes develop resilience, develop relationships with those facing similar health journeys, improve their social skills, increase confidence and gain a feeling of control.

Scotty Burdett is one young person who has experienced one of the camps as a participant about three years ago, and is planning to take part in the upcoming camp – scheduled for February next year – as a team leader.

“The one I went to was just awesome – getting to learn how to control my diabetes, what to look out for and the food side of things. I was the person with the most improved blood sugar levels over the course of the camp.”

Scotty has insulin-dependent Type 2 diabetes, which emerged when he was in his early 20s and is believed to have been caused by medication for the lung condition bronchiectasis.

“I was at the boccia[1] nationals and just kept drinking and drinking water and couldn’t figure out why,” he says. “After I got home, I went to Whangarei Hospital and they tested my blood sugars and found they were at 39.9, when the normal range is between four and eight.

“They referred me to the Diabetes Clinic – they are such a great team and got me on to insulin and helped me get things sorted.”

Local businesses donated more than 120 spot prizes including the Northland Rugby Union who donated a signed rugby shirt which was presented by prop Namatahi Waa on the night.   


[1] [1] Boccia is a game similar to the Italian game bocce (which in turn is related to bowls and petanque). Boccia is played by competitors with a physical disability.



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