DACS – Diabetes Ambulatory Care Service – is a new model of care at Perth Children’s Hospital for children newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
In DACS, patients and families spend less time hospitalised and receive education, care and support as an outpatient at PCH and in the home.
This allows families to look after their child’s diabetes in the early stages at home with support from the Hospital in the Home nurses for two days, as well as access to specialist diabetes nurses who call the families daily for insulin adjustment for the first seven days.
The remaining initial education then occurs as an outpatient at PCH. Education may be offered in the home for families.
Diabetes and Endocrinology Clinic Coordinator Luise Russell said the aim of DACS is to support and educate children and families to effectively and safely self-manage type 1 diabetes.
“The DACS was previously investigated at Princess Margaret Hospital and was found to be a safe and acceptable model for patients and families with comparable clinical outcomes to the longer inpatient stay that in recent years has averaged at seven days,” she said.
“Families have also reported that the shorter hospital stay minimises family disruption at diagnosis and supports their transition to role as carer and condition self-management.”
Ms Russell said it was important to remember that the decision on length of hospital stay and early discharge was carefully considered and a shared one between the clinical team, patient and family.
“For some families, a longer inpatient stay may be necessary, and this will continue to be accommodated,” she said.