DR LIZ DAVIS: HEAD OF THE CHRONIC & SEVERE DISEASES RESEARCH FOCUS AREA, CLINICAL LEAD OF DIABETES AND OBESITY RESEARCH, AND CO-DIRECTOR OF THE CHILDREN’S DIABETES CENTRE
When I started at Princess Margaret Hospital as a young resident more than 25 years ago, one of my first terms was in diabetes.
I didn’t really know much about kids with diabetes at that point and I was just struck by how devastating the condition was for families and how little families knew about diabetes when this bombshell was thrown at them, which affected every aspect of their life – everything from food and exercise to stress, fatigue, puberty, time of the day, time of the year, illness.
Every decision they made could impact the child’s blood glucose levels. I hadn’t really understood that impact and that for the parents it’s really a 24-hour commitment, 365 days a year, to care for their child.
It really resonated for me – the importance of the clinician in understanding and helping that family understand the best ways of managing diabetes.
The fact that if we can do a good job with the kids then we set them up for a much better outcome as an adult has been a real motivator for me as a clinical researcher.