Call to improve Scottish diabetes care
The number of people with type 1 diabetes receiving all nine essential care checks has dropped to less than 40 per cent, it has been announced.
The Scottish Diabetes Survey 2015 has suggested that 50 per cent of those with type 2 had all nine health tests carried out.
The charity has called on a greater commitment to carrying out preventative treatment which it says will help save the NHS thousands of pounds as well as improving peoples health.
‘Basic health checks’
Kirsteen Murray, national director of Diabetes Scotland, said: “Up to 80 per cent of NHS Scotland’s £1 billion annual diabetes bill is spent on treating potentially avoidable complications.
“Smarter investment in diabetes education can reap huge benefits for both the person living with the condition and in managing rising NHS Scotland costs.
“We urge this Scottish Government to deliver on its election promise to ‘improve structured education after diagnosis’ and to commit to at least one in two people with diabetes taking part in by 2020.
“Despite the publication of the Scottish Government’s diabetes improvement plan in November 2014, the most recent Scottish diabetes survey shows we have taken a step back in providing the basic health checks people with diabetes need.”
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) introduced the care checks to ensure everyone with diabetes has certain aspects of their health checked annually.
This includes their weight, blood pressure, smoking status, HbA1c levels, urinary albumin, serum creatinine and cholesterol checked.
The organisation also suggests people’s eyes and feet should be looked at too in order to assess whether their health is being affected by their diabetes.
The screenings can help doctors detect early signs of serious diabetes complications such as heart attacks and kidney disease.
The percentage of people with type 2 diabetes who received all nine of the essential diabetes care checks fell compared to the year before in Scotland.
There was also a percentage decrease for those with type 1 diabetes in eight of the nine care processes.
The number of people in Scotland who have been added to the national diabetes register in seven years has totalled 64,000, which is a 29 per cent increase.
Health minister Aileen Campbell said: “The NHS in Scotland provides some of the best diabetes care in the world. This is against the backdrop of increases in the number of people living with diabetes in recent years.
“Health boards and diabetes teams work hard to stress the importance of attending health checks and education courses to ensure as many people as possible attend.
“More people are now living longer lives with diabetes. The number receiving blood glucose checks and eye screening is at record levels and continues to increase year-on-year. More people than ever before with type 1 diabetes are receiving insulin pump therapy.
“Through our diabetes improvement plan, local services can now see how many people are using services, including education courses, for the first time.”