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The state of the nation: Diabetes in 2014

This important review document draws on diabetes audits carried out in 2014 and reinforces the clear message that diabetes incidence and prevalence are rising dramatically in England. Six per cent of the adult population in England has diabetes, and managing the condition takes 10% of the NHS budget for England. Commenting on the review, Barbara Young reinforced Diabetes UK’s message of disparities in the way diabetes care is accessed, particularly highlighting the suboptimal care for those with type 1 diabetes, working-age people, and people living in certain parts of the country.

by Colin Kenny, GP, Dromore


Diabetes UK’s latest “State of the Nation” document is information rich but is also presented in an accessible style, and performances in a range of target areas, well known to primary care professionals, are highlighted, along with areas where targets could be improved for better outcomes. The performance of CCGs in England is outlined, as is the apparent disparity in care between geographical areas in the nation. The document also returns to the paradox of why people of working age with type 1 or type 2 diabetes are less likely than older people to receive the recommended care processes and meet treatment targets. Only 29% of people with type 1 diabetes and 46% with type 2 diabetes received eight care processes.

The document is presented for a readership that extends beyond healthcare professionals. In particular, 15 care processes are outlined, which people with diabetes have a right to expect, and the report goes on to outline how well the measureable ones are being achieved. The data were almost exclusively from a general practice setting and extracted from the National Diabetes Audit. In addition, though, the document signposts the Diabetes Watch online tool, which allows clinicians to mine into their locality’s data. Anyone interested in quality improvement of diabetes care in 2015 will find much to challenge them in this document.

To access the full publication, click here

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