Education needed for NHS diabetes challenge

“Evidenced-based structured education is the only long-term answer available to the NHS in meeting the challenge posed by the increase in prevalence of Type 2 diabetes”, says Bernie Stribling, the director of DESMOND, a national NHS programme.
She was commenting following the publication of a new report released in early March by the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Diabetes, which found poor delivery of diabetes education was leading to devastating complications and huge costs to the NHS. The report titled Taking control: Supporting people with diabetes found that only 16% of people newly diagnosed with diabetes are offered access to a formal course.

Stribling said, “With diabetes prevalence continuing to rise, the NHS is faced with a huge challenge. Structured education programmes are a proven method to enable supported self-care in diabetes. We believe structured diabetes education is the only long-term answer. People with diabetes have a demanding condition to manage, yet on average they see a healthcare professional for an hour a year only. One hour of support out of a total of 8,766 to help them manage a condition which, if neglected, could lead to blindness, a lost limb or an increased risk of a stroke or heart attack. That’s 525,900 minutes that a person is left alone to manage their condition.”

DESMOND is the NHS programme which teaches people with Type 2 diabetes how to manage their condition and is delivered by more than 90 NHS trusts. When delivered on a large scale, it actually costs £55 (compared with the £76 quoted in the report).

This news item first appeared in Desang Diabetes Magazine, our free-to-receive digital journal. We cover diabetes news, diabetes management equipment (diabetes kit) and news about food suitable for a diabetic diet. Go to the top of this page to sign up – we just need your email address.


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