As part of the Royal Free London’s response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, we have made some changes to our diabetes and endocrine service.
We would like to take this opportunity to update you about your diabetic and endocrinology care at the Royal Free London during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic and reassure you that your health and safety at this time is an absolute priority for us.
The government has outlined that everyone must stay at home, except for limited purposes. People with diabetes are included in the clinically vulnerable group identified by the government, meaning you could be at higher risk of severe illness from coronavirus. You should make every effort to minimise contact with others outside of your household.
Should you need to go outside for any reason, for example getting basic necessities like food or medicine, exercising once a day or going to and from work (only if you cannot work from home), please ensure you practice strict social distancing measures of keeping two metres apart from others and washing your hands frequently. As a precaution, you should also stay away from public places and avoid anyone who has symptoms suggestive of COVID-19. For more information regarding following government advice, please go to: www.gov.uk/government/publications/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing/staying-alert-and-safe-social-distancing
Diabetes services at Barnet Hospital, Chase Farm Hospital, Edgware Hospital and Finchley Memorial Hospital
Our diabetes and endocrinology services are making changes to help respond to COVID-19 and to protect our patients and staff. We are holding a limited number of face-to-face appointments in our clinics at Barnet Hospital, Chase Farm Hospital, Edgware Hospital and Finchley Memorial Hospital until further notice. We have contacted all of our upcoming patients regarding your appointments, indicating whether to attend or not; in some case we have offered a telephone appointment which we aim to be within three weeks of your original face-to-face appointment.
For urgent enquires please contact our diabetes team on: firstname.lastname@example.org or call our helpline number 020 8216 5719, Monday to Friday, 8am-4pm.
Our diabetes foot clinics and joint antenatal clinics are still running face-to-face; please attend as planned unless we have contacted you directly to make changes to your upcoming appointment. If you, or someone in your household experiences symptoms of COVID-19, please do not visit the hospital. Please call your service directly before coming in for further advice.
How to manage your diabetes through COVID-19
Please find useful information regarding your diabetic condition below:
Who needs to shield during the COVID-19 pandemic?
Shielding is a measure to protect people who are clinically extremely vulnerable by minimising all interaction between those who are extremely vulnerable and everybody else. Shielding will affect many Royal Free London patients and if you fall into this category, you will have received a letter and/or text from the NHS with details on how shielding will affect you and what you should do.
The government has published useful guidance about shielding (updated 31 May 2020) for people defined by the UK’s chief medical officer as being extremely clinically vulnerable to, or at highest clinical risk from COVID-19 (coronavirus). This guidance is also useful for family, friends and carers.
Here are some useful links to advice for specific conditions:
- Type 2 NHS England COVID-19 advice: www.england.nhs.uk/london/wp-content/uploads/sites/8/2020/04/3.-Covid-19-Type-2-Sick-Day-Rules-Crib-Sheet-06042020.pdf
- Type 1 (multiple daily injection) NHS England COVID-19 advice: www.england.nhs.uk/london/wp-content/uploads/sites/8/2020/04/2.-Covid-19-Diabetes-Sick-Day-Rules-Type-1-MDI-06042020.pdf
- Type 1 (insulin pump) NHS England COVID-19 general advice: www.england.nhs.uk/london/wp-content/uploads/sites/8/2020/04/1.-Covid-19-Diabetes-Sick-Day-Rules-Crib-Sheet-Type-1-Pump-06042020.pdf
- Type 1 (insulin pump) recommended guidelines for management of high glucose or ketones: www.sjhc.london.on.ca/sites/default/files/pdf/Guidelines-for-Managing-Hyperglycemia-on-a-Pump.pdf
Please find useful information here:
- Thyroid disease: www.endocrinology.org/media/3573/management-of-thyroid-dysfunction-during-covid-19.docx
- Parathyroid disease: www.endocrinology.org/media/3584/coronavirus-and-parathyroid-conditions-faqs-24th-march-2020.docx
- Diabetes insipidus: www.endocrinology.org/media/3602/guidance-for-patients-with-diabetes-insipidus-in-the-era-of-covid-19-1.docx
- Addison’s disease or patients taking steroids for pituitary disease: www.endocrinology.org/media/3610/sfe-covid-19-advice-statement-for-adrenal_pituitary-insufficient-patients-version-3-22042020.docx
- Steroid emergency card: www.endocrinology.org/media/3563/new-nhs-emergency-steroid-card.pdf