Professionals
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Interview (random selection)
 


Born in Northwich, Cheshire in 1926.
Occupation: Diabetes specialist health visitor

Overview: In 1954, Joan Wilson was appointed as a Diabetes Specialist Health Visitor by Dr. Joan Walker of Leicester Royal Infirmary, who believed that patients would benefit from being ‘taught how to live their lives at home`. As a fully trained nurse, she could claim to be one of the UK`s earliest Diabetic Specialist Nurses. She visited homes and gave patients her own home phone number; visited schools and workplaces; liaised with district nurses and GPs and provided patient education at the Infirmary clinics. She was involved in consultant-led clinics in smaller towns and in helping GPs to set up clinics.

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Healthcare Professionals 
Here you can listen to 30 healthcare professionals - doctors, nurses, dietitians, podiatrists and one lay educator – recalling memories of every aspect of their working lives. They talk about their relationships with patients and colleagues as well as changes in treatment, technology, and the health service. The earliest memory is from 1940 and the most recent from 2008.

The interviewees include some pioneers in diabetes care, but also those who had little specialist knowledge – to match the wide range of care described by people with diabetes who had already been recorded for this website.

Some of the people with diabetes describe being treated by pioneers such as R.D. Lawrence, co-founder of the British Diabetic Association, but others were treated by people who were not specialists, including family doctors (GPs) who had rarely encountered diabetes. Our aim was to choose interviewees who would represent the variety of care provided over a period of nearly 70 years.

Those who had already written about their work were asked to provide a selection of up to 12 of their publications. (Click on Publications on their individual page.) However, these interviews are not primarily about scientific developments already well documented, but rather about how these developments affected – or did not affect - the daily lives of healthcare professionals and their patients.

(In addition to 25 interviews that are mainly about professional experience, we have included in this section 2 interviews with people with diabetes and 3 with family members who have also been involved in diabetes care.)
 
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