We spend more money on treating complications than fighting to prevent them. Despite good work being done, access to quality diabetes care is still unequal across the UK, which means not everyone is getting the support they need. Addressing this unfairness, we launched on November 23rd our new report on parliament, the result of a year-long investigation on the causes and solutions to this variation.
You can download the report here: Levelling Up: Tackling Variation in Diabetes Care
A revolution in diabetes care
Secretary of State for Health, the Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP, spoke at the reception and praised the report. He said the time had come “to see words turned into action” and added that people with diabetes could hold the Government to “our promises about transforming diabetes care”.
He urged the audience of MPs, healthcare professionals and campaigners, including people with diabetes, to use the report, which provides solutions to tackle the current variation in care, as a blueprint to go to their Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) and push for change. He said the £40 million that had been announced by the Government was designed to improve diabetes care, including improving access to structured education.
Rt Hon Keith Vaz MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Diabetes, said: “We are on a cliff edge and things must change. We must revolutionise diabetes care and we need to motivate and put pressure on CCGs.”
“CCGs and other health service providers need to have more staff who can educate patients about diabetes, as well as more diabetes specialists on hand to deliver NICE’s (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) recommended yearly healthcare checks for people with diabetes. There are simply some providers who are just not delivering, so we hope CCGs will use this extra money to ensure there is better diabetes care in their catchment areas.”
‘We want to see real change and quickly’
Diabetes UK’s Chief Executive, Chris Askew, said: “Too few people with diabetes are being offered an education course and even if they are offered take-up is low. We want to see real change and quickly. Our aim is to see half of all people with diabetes attending a course by 2020. It is no exaggeration to say that these courses could mean the difference between life and death.”
Chief Executive of the Type 1 diabetes charity JDRF, Karen Addington, said: “People with Type 1 diabetes are still routinely receiving poorer care when compared to people with Type 2 diabetes. This must change. Access to technologies such as insulin pumps needs to improve if we are to raise standards of care.”
See some pictures of the event below. If using any, please credit Philippa Gedge Photography.