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NHS England unveils diabetes care vision

NHS England unveils diabetes care vision


NHS England has set out a vision for how it wants the growing problem of diabetes to be tackled by clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) in 2014.

Improved prevention of Type 2 diabetes, earlier diagnosis of all diabetes, and support for people to manage their diabetes better and improve their quality of life are called for in the Action on Diabetes plan. 

Diabetes is linked to an excess 22,000 deaths a year and sees 100 people a week lose a limb.

Action for Diabetes sets out the breadth of activity NHS England is undertaking as a direct commissioner of GP and other primary care services and as a support to secondary and community care commissioners to enable these improvements in outcomes for all people with and at risk of diabetes to be seen.

For people with diabetes, if their condition is not diagnosed early and managed properly they can potentially suffer life-limiting and even life-threatening complications like blindness, kidney disease, foot disease, heart disease, and stroke.

The vision pledges that NHS England will continue to work with Public Health England on the roll out of NHS Health Checks, a programme aiming to prevent and diagnose thousands of cases of Type 2 diabetes each year.
It also details how GPs will be helped to provide good care and best practice, and outlines resources available to commissioners of hospital-based care to improve treatment for people with diabetes.

'Efficient, appropriate care'

Professor Jonathan Valabhji, national clinical director for obesity and diabetes at NHS England, said: “There is more to do on the individual management of both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes patients in the community, on hospital care, on services being integrated around patient needs and wants, and, underlying all of that, care being safe.

“The UK was recently shown to have the lowest rates of early death due to diabetes out of 19 comparable countries, however, there is much more we can do to reduce the numbers of people getting Type 2 diabetes and to improve the care that all people with diabetes receive.

“In the future, we want to see fewer people developing Type 2 diabetes, and we want to see all people with diabetes having the support to manage their condition, with access to specialist care when they need it.”

The report makes some further key points:

 - NHS England’s work to improve diabetes care will be based on the ‘House of Care’ model of integrated services around the needs of the individual, as part of a wider long-term conditions management programme.

 - NHS England has tasked NHS Improving Quality to work with primary care services to trial and roll out new tools to help ensure earlier diagnosis across a range of conditions including Type 2 diabetes, to work on projects to reduce the high death rates associated with diabetic foot disease whether it be due to Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, and on the transition of young people to adult services.

- NHS England recently published an additional 40 general practice level indicators on the NHS Choices website, of which eight are directly related to diabetes care, in a new accountability area designed to provide information to people who want to get involved in conversations about their local health services.

Professor Valabhji said: “New thinking about how to provide integrated services in the future is needed in order to give individuals the care and support they require in the most efficient and appropriate care settings, across primary, community, secondary, mental health and social care, and in a safe timescale.

Action for Diabetes shows the direction of travel NHS England is taking to support these improvements in outcomes, and we will continue to work hard to ensure improved care and outcomes for all people with long-term conditions, including diabetes.”


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