Lack Of Education Is Killing Up to 24,000 Diabetics Each Year

Posted by JOrchard on 14 July, 2016

Up to 24,000 diabetics are needlessly dying every year simply because the NHS are failing to educate them in how to manage their condition effectively.

Since 2003, the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended that all diabetics be offered programmes which will teach they all about their condition including how to manage their blood glucose and insulin, increase their exercise, lower their weight, understand certain food labels and spot complications.

Despite this, only 2% of people who are newly diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and 6% of those with Type 2 diabetes have actually attended the course, either because they were not offered the course or nobody checked they were actually attending.

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Diabetes UK estimates that the majority of the 24,000 early deaths which occur every year and the 7,000 amputations could potentially be avoided if people were properly educated about their condition.

England’s new Prime Minister, Theresa May suffers from Type 1 diabetes but is diligent about looking after her health.

Previous studies have indicated that the life expectancy of a man diagnosed with diabetes at 55 differs by nearly eight years depending on how healthy he stays. While those looking after themselves could expect to live until around the age of 76, those who don’t take care of themselves are likely to die by the age of 68, 13 years earlier than average life expectancy of a British man. 

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Diabetes UK, have released their ‘State of the Nation’ report looking into diabetes care said that the statistics are a huge cause for concern.

Diabetes UK Chief Executive, Chris Askew said: “Diabetes is a very serious and complex health condition that requires constant self-management.

“This can be extremely overwhelming, yet people with diabetes may only see their GPs and nurses a few times year, and if they fail to manage their diabetes effectively the results can be devastating.

“This is why it is essential that everyone with diabetes has a chance to learn about how to manage their condition well.” There are more than three million people in Britain living with diabetes, but the report also finds that just 41 per cent of people with Type 2 diabetes and 19 per cent of people with Type 1 diabetes in England and Wales are meeting their targets for blood pressure, blood glucose and cholesterol.

Diabetes UK are calling for improvements to the delivery of diabetes education courses so that at least half of people with diabetes receive education within the next five years.

Currently, the NHS are spending around £10 billion every year on diabetes, which equates to around 10 per cent of its entire budget.

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