On Thursday 6 September, a representative from Doncaster and Bassetlaw Diabetes Eye Screening Programme met with the team at Doncaster Rovers in order to outline the dangers of Diabetic Retinopathy.
Ingrid Thomasson, Joint Programme Manager for the service, visited the first team at Doncaster Rovers with the aim of raising awareness about the condition as well as highlighting the importance of attending screenings to ensure any problems are caught early on. The hope is that they will then pass this crucial information along to their fans, friends and families.
Speaking about the visit, Ingrid said: ‘’It is important that people are equipped with sufficient knowledge about diabetic retinopathy, as it can have severe complications if not closely monitored and treated promptly. Often brought on by high blood sugar levels, it can be incredibly damaging to the back of the eye, potentially resulting in loss of sight.
‘’Everyone with diabetes, aged 12 or over, receives an annual invitation for retinopathy screening. These appointments are absolutely vital for detecting the condition before it is too late. If you are, or a loved one, are in this risk group, make sure you keep your appointment!”
Doncaster Rovers will be collaborating further with the Screening Programme, taking an active part in promoting National Eye Health Week (NEHW), which will take place from 24 to 30 September 2018. For the duration of the week, there will be specialist coverage in match-day programmes and campaign posters will be on display around the stadium, with leaflets handed out to fans in the club shop.
Alfie May, Striker for Doncaster Rovers, said: ‘’ I greatly appreciate Ingrid taking the time to speak with us, as I have family members with diabetes and so this matter is really close to my heart. At first I was frightened to hear that my family could be at risk of losing their eyesight, but when I found out about the screening appointments, I felt great relief. For this reason, it’s very important to me that we get the message out there.”
If you have diabetes, then there are a number of things you can do to reduce your risk of sight loss. As well as attending your annual screening appointments, make sure you exercise regularly, eat well and control your blood sugar levels and avoid smoking.
If you think you have missed your screening appointment you can call the team on 01302642596 to arrange another one.
*Words - Communications team at Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.