Summer camps for diabetic children: an experience in Campania, Italy

Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 1996 Apr;32(1-2):91-6. doi: 10.1016/0168-8227(96)01219-3.

Abstract

To evaluate the effectiveness of summer camps with objective parameters, the authors examined data relative to nine summer camps organized by the Young Diabetics Association in Campania, Italy. The mean duration of camps was 10 days (range, 8-15) and a total of 256 diabetic children with an average age of 10 (range 8-16) participated in them. The medical personnel consisted of three pediatric endocrinologists, one psychologist, two male nurses and two parents who were directors of the Association. A significant improvement in knowledge and self-management of the disease was noted at the end of the camps. A beneficial effect on mean HbA1c level was also observed in the diabetic children who attended the monthly meetings and follow-up checks with their parents after the camp. On the other hand, a worsening of these values was noted in diabetic children who did not participate in them. No increased incidence of hypoglycaemia or ketoacidosis was found during or after camps, in contrast with previous studies. From a psychological viewpoint, the results suggest that summer camps have an important bearing on achieving acceptance of the disease. Sharing personal experiences with actively involved parents who participated in self-management training together with their children, has favourably influenced the results of this experience in Campania.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Comparative Study
  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Camping*
  • Child
  • Computer-Assisted Instruction
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / drug therapy
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / rehabilitation*
  • Female
  • Glycated Hemoglobin A / analysis
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Insulin / administration & dosage
  • Insulin / therapeutic use
  • Italy
  • Male
  • Patient Education as Topic / methods*
  • Self Care

Substances

  • Glycated Hemoglobin A
  • Insulin