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CWD Answers Archives

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May 28, 1999

Social Issues: Community Resources

Question from Scotland:

I am a community paediatrician. I’m looking for a web-site that I can print out and give to a nine-year-old diabetic boy, explaining to him how to look after his type 1 diabetes. His mother is overburdened and he now needs to take control. Any suggestions?


From: DTeam Staff

I understand that this child’s mother is overburdened, but a nine-year-old should not expected to take of himself. I think you need to get the district nurse involved along with social services. Your district diabetes nurse can do an assessment and along with help from whatever social services are available, find ways of appropriately helping this family.

By the way, there are lots of good age appropriate materials from the British Diabetes Association.

Additional Comments from Dr. Kenneth J. Robertson
This is a somewhat neglected area. While there are many websites and books catering for the slightly older (and more literate) patient, the age group you refer to is not well provided for.

However, I am slightly worried about the concept of a nine year-old being given responsibility for his diabetes. Obviously, a degree of devolution is entirely appropriate but this only works if there is adequate supervision. If there is doubt about mum’s ability to provide this, then I would involve the social work department at an early stage.

Additional comments from The Editor:

There are several excellent books for younger kids that explain diabetes at a child’s level.