Wednesday, 19 February 2014

We shouldn't be ashamed - now we aren't!

In my previous blog post I expressed disappointment at the advice given by Boots around dealing with diabetes in a workplace environment.

It got a surprisingly large number of you talking about it (particularily on Twitter) and a number of you felt compelled to post your disappointment directly on the Boots facebook page.

Example comment left on the Boots UK Facebook page

Example comment left on the Boots UK Facebook page

It wasn't long before Boots responded saying the team responsible for content would look at it that Monday.


I will confess, I thought this response was just a standard tactic to disfuse a situation and nothing much would actually come of it. However, I am happy to admit that the cynic within me was completely and utterly wrong!

Boots and WebMD deserve a lot of credit for acknowledging and acting upon the feedback provided. They have responded - not by making token changes, but by completely re-writing the article and I for one am extremely pleased with the wording now being used.

No longer does it suggest going to the toilet to test, it says:

"Because all workplaces are different, there's no set advice given on where to do tests and jabs. Diabetes UK says it should be done where the person feels most comfortable, and the toilet is less than ideal for hygiene reasons. Some people who work in offices may do it at their desk, others may prefer the canteen, or some may prefer a private area."

Instead of suggesting that you might want to leave a meeting to treat a hypo (due to embarrassment), it now reads:

"Do not be embarrassed if you need to eat something at a meeting, just do it."

...and no longer does it suggest keeping your diabetes a secret when birthday cake is offered:

"If there are cakes at an office birthday party, you can participate like everyone else. Don’t be afraid to tell people that diabetes doesn’t mean you have to have a special diet, you can eat just the same healthy diet as everyone else."

I am immensely proud of the #ourD community, not just for challenging Boots on their advice but for having the courtesy to thank them once they took onboard the criticism and rewrote the article. The Boots/WebMD team have excelled themselves in the rapid turn around on the feedback provided and I believe as a community we have made a real difference.

Example of appreciation posted on the Boots UK Facebook page


You can read the new article from the Boots/WebMD team here: Tips to help manage diabetes at work.

Thank you to everyone that got involved and made something good happen!

Maybe the next challenge is to get Boots to rename their "Diabetic" range of food a low-sugar range? ...just a thought :)