People with diabetes at the centre of care, say MPs

By Editor
3rd July 2014
Charity, Department of Health Latest news

The health system needs to change to put people with diabetes at the centre of their care, according to a Health Select Committee report on long-term conditions.

The 131-page report, released today, highlights the need for a clear plan from the government to meet the huge challenge facing the NHS in delivering care for all people with long-term conditions.

A total of 15 million NHS patients in England with long-term conditions such as diabetes, arthritis and asthma account for 70 per cent of the annual expenditure of the NHS in England, according to the major inquiry into managing the care of people with long-term conditions.

The committee reports that demographic and cost pressures on the NHS from patients with long-term conditions is only likely to increase in the coming years, with one projection estimating that the bill for treatment of long-term conditions will require the NHS to find £4 billion more each year by 2016.  This in a period when the NHS budget is barely increasing in real terms and when local authority social care budgets have been cut by £2.6 billion.

Bridget Turner, Director of Policy and Care Improvement for Diabetes UK, said: “As the report makes clear, the health system needs to change to put people with long-term conditions, including diabetes, at the centre of the care they receive.

“Many people have more than one condition and there are similarities in the principles of good care across different long term conditions. There are also big differences between each condition so it is vital that the specific needs to each condition are not lost.

“This is why it is essential that the 3.8 million people with diabetes know what care to expect and how to manage their diabetes. Key to this is effective care planning where people with diabetes work with their healthcare team to jointly agree priorities and ensure their health needs are met effectively.

“Services for people with long term health conditions also need to be delivered in a joined up way from GP surgery to hospitals rather than there being barriers between them. With the numbers of people with long term conditions growing at an alarming rate it is essential that the Government and NHS England implement a strategy that will deliver this.”

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