Integrated Multidisciplinary Diabetes Psychology Support – A First For Ireland


At Diabetes Insight we are delighted to have joined forces with Marie McGowan Reg. Psychol., PsSI, MBPsS, (BSc Psychology (Hons), MA Counselling Psychology, MSc Work & Organisational Psychology) to launch Irelands First Integrated Multidisciplinary Diabetes Psychology Support Service from our centre in Cork Health & Lifestyle Centre, Blackrock, Cork


Psychological Support for Diabetes in Ireland

Irish researchers have pointed to key factors that cause psychological distress in people with diabetes.

They have also pointed to a lack of proper access to care contributing to these psychological issues.

Researchers from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) and the Department of Sociology in University College Cork (UCC) have discovered that patients feel frustrated over not having access to psychological support, something which patients believe can be helpful in moderating diabetes-related stress.

The study found a number of factors that can trigger diabetes-related psychological distress in young people with type 1 diabetes.

These include self-consciousness, stigma attached to the illness, diabetes management difficulties, waiting times for care and lack of joined up care in the current health system.

In addition, patients had concerns about their future and in young women, apprehension about pregnancy.

The researchers found that young people are often reluctant to speak about psychological issues related to their diabetes.

Type 1 diabetes usually develops in children and young adults.

In this form of diabetes, the body stops producing insulin and blood sugar levels level increase. Insulin injections sare used to to control blood glucose levels, and a healthy diet is also important in managing the condition.

“We focused on people in their twenties because this is a time in the lives of many young people where they are beginning their careers, starting relationships and moving to adult health services, all the while trying to manage their diabetes. This can lead some young people to feel overwhelmed”, said one of the study investigators, consultant endocrinologist Dr Seamus Sreenan.

The research found that diabetes-related psychological distress can be helped by giving people with diabetes the opportunity to talk to healthcare professionals about their frustrations, attending diabetes education programmes and joining peer support groups.

The researchers pointed out that young Irish diabetes patients are often reluctant to open up and speak about psychological issues with healthcare professionals due to infrequent access to care, short clinical appointment times and unfamiliarity with their clinician.

“Psychological distress is an important issue in young people with type 1 diabetes in this age group. We believe the findings indicate the importance of healthcare professionals focusing on the emotional states of young people with diabetes, as well as their physical condition,” Prof Sreenan said.

He added that young people are now turning to social media sites for support, instead of seeking this from healthcare professionals.

The research, funded by Diabetes Ireland Research Alliance and the Health Research Board (HRB), is published in the journal Endocrine Disorders.


What Our Service Involves

At Diabetes Insight we cater for all Types of Diabetes, children, teens, adults, family and parents. We advice that all clients accessing psychological services with Diabetes Insight, have a pre-assessment with Helena Farrell RGN, MSc to detect the key issues which need support. This ensures that the service provided is tailored to your needs, makes best use of your time and is effective.

Once a pre-assessment is conducted, you will be asked to sign a consent to discuss your case with Marie McGowan our onsite psychologist as part of a multidisciplinary approach, and a consultation with Marie will be arranged.

All our services are available at the Cork Health & Lifestyle Centre, which offers privacy and confidentiality in a safe, calm, relaxed environment.

Prices & Bookings

Prices start at 65 euros for a pre-assessment with Diabetes Insight and bookings/queries can be made by ringing 021 4358960, Mob: 086 1739287, email:


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