Examining the role and experiences of Australian diabetes nurse educators providing an insulin pump service: An interpretive description study

  • Marlene Payk

Student thesis: Professional Doctorate

Abstract

Insulin pump therapy has increased in popularity with evidence that it provides people with type 1 diabetes, quality of life benefits, less variability in blood glucose levels, and has been shown to reduce the frequency of hypoglycaemia and the risk of diabetes complications. In Australia, however, not all diabetes nurse educators offer an insulin pump service and limited formal professional training is available for acquiring these skills. Further, there is paucity in the research on the role and experiences of diabetes nurse educators providing an insulin pump service and the barriers and facilitators encountered when providing this support. The qualitative study addresses the significant aspect of care provision for people with diabetes.
Using interpretive description, the study draws on the experiences of diabetes nurse educators and consumers to examine the role of Australian diabetes nurse educators providing an insulin pump service to people with type 1 diabetes. Interviews and demographic questionnaires from nine diabetes nurse educators and 11 consumers of insulin pump therapy were conducted. Purposive and snowball sampling were used to recruit both participant groups. Analysis involved an inductive comparison and contrasting of the data, noting similarities and differences, generating codes and themes. Consistent with interpretive description methodology, findings provided an interpretive explanation of the participants’ experiences and perspectives. Data from the two participant groups were integrated and synthesised to develop common themes. Key themes describing the diabetes nurse educators’ experiences of providing an insulin pump service included: the learning phases perceived and experienced by the diabetes nurse educators; meeting consumer needs and own expectations, and; the role in the team, describing the diabetes nurse educators’ perceived limitations and scope of practice while working as part of an integral team Themes describing consumers’ experiences and perceptions of receiving insulin pump support from diabetes nurse educators included: support needs and support provided; the diabetes nurse educators’ understanding of pump technology, and; the resourcefulness of consumers filling the gaps in support. The final integration and synthesis found four themes common between the two participant groups: (a) standards of practice and care provision; (b) mentoring to facilitate learning, the role of the pump company representative in assisting successful insulin pump therapy, and; (d) the future impact of insulin pump technology for diabetes nurse educators and consumers.
Findings of the study highlight the increased learning and workload generated by insulin pump therapy, the benefits and difficulties of insulin pump technology in health care and working within scope of practice, legislation, patient safety, and consumer needs. Findings from the study support the need for formal education and accreditation in insulin pump therapy for diabetes nurse educators and engaging consumers of insulin pump therapy in co-designing services.
Date of Award2020
Original languageEnglish
SupervisorBasseer Jeeawody (Supervisor), Eileen Petrie (Supervisor), Kim Foster (Supervisor), Deborah Davis (Supervisor), Catherine Hungerford (Supervisor) & Tracy Robinson (Supervisor)

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