DAFNEplus turns two!

Happy 2nd Birthday DAFNEplus!

This month marks the two-year point for the DAFNEplus! So we thought now would be a good opportunity to update you on what’s been happening over the last six months. And what a busy six months it’s been for the DAFNEplus team and enormous thanks are due to everyone involved! Here’s what we’ve been up to and if you missed the 18-month progress update the full story can be read here.

Developing DAFNEplus

After reviewing the feedback from first wave of the pilot study, the DAFNEplus facilitators set to work revising the curriculum and workbooks ready for the participants in wave two. This wasn’t a quick job with five full days of material, additional resources to be created (like new posters and cue cards), and tweaks to the timetable all to consider. We’ve also made great strides in incorporating the technology into DAFNEplus, and our engineering and clinical teams are working closely together to make this as effective as possible before the trial. Additional top up training in the new elements of DAFNEplus has also been given to facilitators in all three pilot sites by clinical psychologist, Nicole De Zoysa.

Piloting DAFNEplus

Wave two of the pilot study saw an additional three courses being run in each of our pilot centres in Sheffield, Norwich and King’s College Hospital, which takes us to eight courses in total. Initial feedback has been collected by the team from University College London has been very positive, but we will continue to evaluate DAFNEplus, and refine it further before the trial starts in the Autumn. We want to make this as good as we can now!

Recruitment to the trial

In our last update we were just starting out the visits to the potential sites for the trial, since then we have been very busy visiting all the potential sites and working closely with DAFNE centres that will join us on the trial. We are really grateful to all our DAFNE centres and look forward to collaborating with them over the next few years, so we can work out if DAFNEplus is clinically and cost-effective.

Protocol and local set-up

The protocol for the trial has now been written, following several rounds of feedback and development. The next step is for us in trial set-up is to submit to an NHS Research Ethics Committee who will review the study, alongside the Health Research Authority before we work with the Research and Development departments in all our NHS Hospital Trusts. In parallel to this, we are working with our DAFNE centres to apply for the excess treatment costs to support delivery of the study, another crucial stage in publicly funded research.

Working with patients

We continue to work closely with our Patient Advisory Groups who provide such great input to the development of DAFNEplus and the design of our research. Thanks to everyone who gives their time to help us with this!

Dissemination Activity

The DAFNEplus team have also started to write up the research and submitted two papers to academic journals, so far. We await the reviewers’ comments on our work, and in the meantime, we will continue to write up the many parts of DAFNEplus. We’ve also presented some of the methodological work at academic conferences in recent months, and we hope that the more innovative elements of what we’ve been doing are helpful to the research community.

Where next?

Over the next six months, we will be really busy on the following:

  • Finalising the DAFNEplus programme before the trial to incorporate the feedback received over the pilot study;
  • Setting up the trial – getting the necessary governance approvals in place, finalising the data collection processes and training the staff in trial centres, and by the time September comes around… opening the trial to people with type 1 diabetes!
  • Keeping going with dissemination activity – writing up research papers and presentations. Watch this space for more outputs from the research!

 

Lizzie Coates, DAFNEplus Programme Manager

 

Image credits

Emily Naylor by CC 2.0

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