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Found 158 results
  1. News Article
    Diabetes patients have told the BBC they are struggling without what they have called a "wonder drug". Experts estimate about 400,000 people with Type 2 diabetes could have been affected by a national supply shortage caused by rising demand. The new generation of medicines - GLP-1 receptor agonists - mimic a hormone that not only controls blood sugar levels but also suppresses appetite. The government said it was trying to help resolve the supply chain issues. NHS England has issued a National Patient Safety Alert for the drugs. The NHS alerts require action to be taken by healthcare providers to reduce the risk of death or disability. The diabetes medicines in short supply are Ozempic, Trulicity, Victoza, Byetta, and Bydureon. They work via injections instead of tablets. The group of medicines has been used by the NHS for diabetes for around a decade but in recent years there has been a growth in private clinics prescribing the same drugs for weight loss for people who do not have diabetes, pushing up demand. Novo Nordisk, which manufactures Ozempic and Victoza, told the BBC it was experiencing shortages of its medicines for people in the UK with Type 2 diabetes due to "unprecedented levels of demand". Read full story Source: BBC News, 26 January 2024 Have you (or a loved one) ever been prescribed medication that you were then unable to get hold of at the pharmacy or in hospital? To help us understand how these issues impact the lives of patients and families, please share your experience and insights in our hub community thread on the topic here or drop a comment below. You'll need to register with the hub first, its free and easy to do.
  2. Content Article
    Sarah Rainey talks to Olivia Djouadi about her experience of type 1 diabetes with disordered eating (T1DE), which is thought to affect up to 40% of women and 15% of men with type 1 diabetes. People with T1DE, sometimes also called diabulimia, limit their insulin intake to control their weight, which can have life-threatening consequences. Olivia describes how the stress of living with type 1 contributed to her developing T1DE, and how when she finally received treatment and support in her 30s, she was able to deal with her disordered eating and see her health and wellbeing improve.
  3. Content Article
    This is a safety critical and complex National Patient Safety Alert. Implementation should be co-ordinated by an executive lead (or equivalent role in organisations without executive boards) and supported by clinical leaders in diabetes, GP practices, pharmacy services in all sectors, weight loss clinics, private healthcare providers and those working in the Health and Justice sector.
  4. Content Article
    This leaflet aims to help people with type 1 diabetes decide between the different technologies available to manage diabetes. It contains summaries of devices available and infographics outlining eligibility criteria for continuous glucose monitors (CGM), insulin pumps and hybrid-closed loop systems. Diabetes care is one of the five clinical areas of focus for integrated care boards and partnerships to achieve system change and improve care as part of Core20Plus5 for children and young people with the aim to increase access to real-time continuous glucose monitors and insulin pumps across the most deprived quintiles and from ethnic minority backgrounds.
  5. Content Article
    People with diabetes often encounter stigma in the form of negative social judgments, stereotypes and prejudice, which can adversely affect emotional, mental and physical health, self-care, access to healthcare and social and professional opportunities. On average, four in five adults with diabetes experience diabetes stigma and one in five experience discrimination due to diabetes in healthcare, education, and employment. Diabetes stigma and discrimination are harmful, unacceptable, unethical, and counterproductive. Collective leadership is needed to proactively challenge, and bring an end to, diabetes stigma and discrimination. To help achieve this, an international multidisciplinary expert panel conducted rapid reviews and participated in a three-round Delphi survey process. The group achieved consensus on 25 statements of evidence and 24 statements of recommendations. The consensus is that diabetes stigma is driven primarily by blame, perceptions of burden or sickness, invisibility and fear or disgust.
  6. Content Article
    Lions Clubs Message in a Bottle is a simple but effective way for people to keep their basic personal and medical details where they can be found in an emergency on a standard form and in a common location – the fridge. Message in a Bottle (known within Lions as MIAB) helps emergency services personnel to save valuable time in identifying an individual very quickly and knowing if they have any allergies or take special medication. Find out more about the initiative and how to order a bottle via the link below.
  7. News Article
    Hundreds more middle-aged adults have been dying each month since the end of the pandemic, as obesity and NHS backlogs drive a surge in excess deaths. New analysis of official statistics has revealed that there were an extra 28,000 deaths in the UK during the first six months of 2023, compared with levels in the previous five years. The biggest rise in unexpected deaths has been among adults aged 50 to 64, who are increasingly dying prematurely from preventable conditions including heart disease and diabetes. The Covid inquiry is now being urged to shift its focus from “tactical decisions made by politicians” and to examine the lasting disruption that has kept deaths persistently high since the virus peaked. Experts believe that difficulties in accessing GPs since lockdown and record NHS waiting lists mean that middle-aged patients are missing out on life-saving preventative treatment such as blood pressure medication. Unhealthy lifestyles, obesity and widening health inequalities are also contributing to a rise in avoidable deaths. Professor Yvonne Doyle, who led Public Health England during the pandemic, warned that the official Covid inquiry risks “missing the point” by focusing on the drama and WhatsApps of Westminster politicians. In an article for The Times, Doyle, who gave evidence to the inquiry six weeks ago, says that the tens of thousands of excess deaths since Covid “represent an underlying pandemic of ill health” that should be addressed. Read full story (paywalled) Source: The Times, 13 December 2023
  8. Content Article
    D-Coded is an online resource that presents easy-to-understand summaries of diabetes research studies. It aims to make the latest knowledge and developments accessible to people who don't have a medical or scientific background. In this blog, Jazz Sethi, Founder and Director of the Diabesties Foundation and part of the global team that developed D-Coded, discusses the need for the resource and outlines how it will help people living with diabetes to better understand and manage their condition.
  9. News Article
    A new risk calculator will help to identify people with type 2 diabetes who are at high risk of developing heart and circulatory diseases with greater accuracy than ever before. By spotting high-risk individuals years in advance, doctors will be able to offer vital preventative treatment that can help save lives by warding off future heart attacks and strokes. The risk calculator is included in the new European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Guidelines advising doctors on the management of cardiovascular disease in people with type 2 diabetes, which were announced at the ESC’s annual Congress in August. There are around 4.5 million people in the UK with type 2 diabetes, and one third of adults with diabetes die from a heart or circulatory disease. The SCORE2-Diabetes risk calculator, published in the European Heart Journal, will allow doctors to estimate the risk of developing a heart or circulatory disease in the next 10 years, with much improved accuracy. Professor Sir Nilesh Samani, our Medical Director, said: “People with diabetes are overall nearly twice as likely to die of heart disease or stroke as those who do not have the condition. "This increased risk can be substantially reduced by interventions such as blood pressure control and statins, but this requires more accurate identification of those at increased risk. “SCORE2-Diabetes is a valuable advance that will allow doctors to tailor pre-emptive treatments for individuals with type 2 diabetes based on their personal risk of heart and circulatory diseases. "Such an approach is vital as clinicians in the UK and across Europe find new ways to reduce the high levels of ill health associated with diabetes.” Read full story Source: British Heart Foundation, 26 November 2023
  10. Content Article
    D-coded diabetes is a tool that aims to simplify complex research studies about diabetes making the science accessible to everyone living with the condition. It uses simple language and images to explain the methodology and results of studies and trials. D-coded diabetes was created by The Diabesties Foundation, a nonprofit organisation aimed at delivering impact by revolutionising advocacy, education and support for people living with Type 1 Diabetes.
  11. Content Article
    This article by the charity DiaTribe looks at the impact of armed conflict and displacement on people living with diabetes. Referencing the situation facing people with diabetes in Gaza, it highlights the safety risks including lack of access to healthcare professionals, insulin and other medications and reliable food sources. As well as signposting to other resources for people living with non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in conflict zones, the article provides advice for patients on being prepared for unexpected disasters, including ensuring they have a good knowledge of self-management, know how to safely store insulin and have a diabetes identification card. It also outlines what healthcare workers, governments and aid organisations can do to support people with diabetes living in or having fled conflict zones.
  12. News Article
    Thousands of people unaware they have type 2 diabetes could be diagnosed and avoid serious complications if screening was introduced in emergency departments, a study suggests. The prevalence of the disease has risen dramatically in countries of all income levels in the last three decades, according to the World Health Organization. More than 400 million people have been diagnosed, but millions more are estimated to be in the dark about the fact they have the condition. A study that took place in an NHS trust in England suggests 10% more cases could be picked up with the use of a simple blood test. Screening could also pick up 30% more cases of pre-diabetes – a serious condition where blood sugar levels are higher than normal. The findings are being presented at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) in Hamburg, Germany. “Early diagnosis is the best way to avoid the devastating complications of type 2 diabetes, and offers the best chance of living a long and healthy life,” said Prof Edward Jude, of Tameside and Glossop integrated care NHS foundation trust. Read full story Source: The Guardian, 3 October 2023
  13. News Article
    Thousands of women may be missing out on a diagnosis of type 2 diabetes because the thresholds are geared towards men, research suggests. Scientists assessed test results from more than one million patients across the country and concluded that the bar for diagnosis might be set too high for women. They calculated that, if thresholds were lowered slightly, an extra 35,000 women under the age of 50 in England would be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes — increasing the number in this age group with the condition by 17%. Under the present guidelines, those 35,000 women would be given the all-clear and would miss out on the chance of earlier treatment and lifestyle advice, increasing their risk of complications in later life. The team, led by doctors at the University of Manchester and including researchers from hospitals nationwide, stressed that their findings were preliminary, and needed further assessment before their hypothesis was confirmed. But, if proved correct, they believe that about 65 young women may be dying of diabetes each year without a diagnosis. Read full story (paywalled) Source: The Times, 1 October 2023
  14. Content Article
    If you are throwing up, having diarrhoea, drinking less water and/or have a fever, you can become dehydrated. Being dehydrated means your body doesn't have enough fluids. When you're dehydrated, some medications used to treat certain health problems may cause unwanted side effects, such as harm to your kidneys. It is important to have a plan to prevent these side effects in case you should become sick and dehydrated. The authors of this guidance learned about a person who died in hospital as a result of side effects of taking a particular medication while dehydrated. They were taking a diabetes medication called empagliflozin and kept taking the same dose after becoming sick. This medication is helpful for people with diabetes, but it can cause serious side effects if it's taken when the person is dehydrated. This guidance offers advice on how to reduce the risk of side effects from your medications when you are sick and dehydrated.
  15. News Article
    Targeted screening of patients with type 2 diabetes could more than double new diagnoses of heart conditions, a study suggests. When applied at a larger scale, such an approach could translate into tens of thousands of new diagnoses, researchers believe. Conditions such as coronary artery disease, atrial fibrillation and heart failure affect millions of people worldwide, causing a large number of deaths and increasing healthcare costs. Treatments are available that can prevent stroke or acute heart failure, but systematic screening is not currently common practice. Those living with conditions such as type 2 diabetes or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) – a group of lung conditions that cause breathing difficulties – are at high risk of such conditions. A team of researchers led by Dr Amy Groenewegen, from the University Medical Centre Utrecht in the Netherlands, has developed a three-step screening process to detect conditions in high-risk people at an early stage. Study author Dr Groenewegen said: “An easy-to-implement strategy more than doubled the number of new diagnoses of heart failure, atrial fibrillation and coronary artery disease in high-risk patients.” Read full story Source: Independent, 29 August 2023
  16. Content Article
    Despite the prevalence of diabetes amongst individuals with Serious Mental Illness (SMI), diabetes care is not currently audited within mental health inpatient settings as it audited in physical health settings. This project piloted an audit to assess the diabetes care within London NHS Mental Health Trusts. The Health Innovation Network in partnership with South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust (SLaM) developed and piloted a diabetes audit. Following the SLaM pilot, the audit was completed by all nine London Mental Health Trusts. A diverse approach was taken to spread and adoption. This included piloting the audit within one MH Trust, refining, and then rolling out the audit to eight London Mental Health Trusts.
  17. News Article
    The Government must provide the health service with more support to fulfil its ambition of extending healthy life expectancy and reducing premature death, an expert has warned. It comes after the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) published an interim report on its Major Conditions Strategy, a 5-year blueprint to help manage six disease groups more effectively and tackle health inequality. The groups are cancer, cardiovascular disease – including stroke and diabetes – musculoskeletal conditions, chronic respiratory diseases, mental health conditions and dementia. The Government said the illnesses "account for over 60% of ill health and early death in England", while patients with two or more conditions account for about 50% of hospital admissions, outpatient visits, and primary care consultations. By 2035, two-thirds of adults over 65 are expected to be living with two or more conditions, while 17% could have four or more. Sally Gainsbury, Nuffield Trust senior policy analyst, said the Government is right to focus on the six conditions, but "will need to shift more of its focus towards primary prevention, early diagnosis, and symptom management". She added: "What's less clear is how Government will support health and care systems to do this in the context of severe pressures on staff and other resources, as well as a political culture that tends to place far more focus on what happens inside hospitals than what happens in community healthcare services, GP practices and pharmacies. This initiative is both long overdue and its emphasis has shifted over time. The Major Conditions Strategy is being developed in place of a White Paper on health inequalities originally promised over 18 months ago." Read full story Source: Medscape, 16 August 2023
  18. Content Article
    Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System (ICS) has achieved great results in supporting access to the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme. This case study outlines the approach taken by the ICS to improve access, what the outcomes were and key lessons learned.
  19. Content Article
    The major conditions strategy is a national framework being developed by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) and the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID). It will focus on six major groups of conditions: cancers cardiovascular diseases, including stroke and diabetes chronic respiratory diseases dementia mental ill health musculoskeletal disorders This briefing by NHS Confederation examines how the upcoming major conditions strategy can set the conditions to prevent, treat and manage multimorbidity in England.
  20. News Article
    A lack of diabetes checks following the first Covid lockdown may have killed more than 3,000 people, a major NHS study suggests. Those with the condition are supposed to undergo regular checks to detect cardiac problems, infections and other changes that could prove deadly. But researchers said a move to remote forms of healthcare delivery and a reduction in routine care meant some of the most crucial physical examinations did not take place during the 12 months following the first lockdown. Experts said the findings showed patients had suffered “absolutely devastating” consequences and were being “pushed to the back of the queue”. The study, led by Prof Jonathan Valabhji, the national clinical director for diabetes and obesity, links the rise in deaths to a fall in care the previous year. It showed that, during 2020/21, just 26.5% of diabetes patients received their full set of checks, compared with 48.1% the year before. Those who got all their checks in 2019-20 but did not receive them the following year had mortality rates 66% higher than those who did not miss out, the study, published in Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology, found. The study shows that foot checks, which rely on physical appointments, saw the sharpest drop, falling by more than 37%. “The care process with the greatest reduction was the one that requires the most in-person contact – foot surveillance – possibly reflecting issues around social distancing, lockdown measures, and the move to remote forms of healthcare delivery,” the study found. Those in the poorest areas were most likely to miss out. Read full story (paywalled) Source: The Telegraph, 30 May 2022
  21. News Article
    The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has issued a national patient safety alert for the NovoRapid PumpCart prefilled insulin cartridge and the Roche Accu-Chek Insight Insulin pump system following concerns raised about cracked cartridges and insulin leaks. Patients are being asked to check the pre-filled glass insulin cartridge for cracks prior to use. The cartridge should not be used if it has been dropped even if no cracks are visible. Closely follow the updated handling instructions in the pump user manual when changing pre-filled glass insulin cartridges. The device, which releases the insulin your body needs through the day and night, comprises a pump, tube, battery and a pre-filled glass insulin cartridge. In some of the reported leakage incidents, the cartridges were found to be cracked and provided an inadequate supply of insulin to patients. However, leakages also occurred in cases where no cracks in the cartridge were visible. In some patients there were consequences of not receiving enough insulin from their pump system, including reports of severely high blood sugar and diabetic ketoacidosis (a serious complication of diabetes when the body produces high levels of blood acids called ketones). Health care professionals are being advised to contact patients over the next six months using said device to discuss their individual needs and source an alternative pump where appropriate. Key patient recommendations are: Check the pump and cartridge regularly for damages, for example cracks or leakage. If you smell insulin (a strong antiseptic chemical smell) this could also indicate a leakage. Do not use the cartridge if cracks or leakage are seen or if the cartridge was dropped. Follow the instructions of your Accu-Chek Insight user manual for replacing a cartridge and for cleaning the cartridge compartment in the insulin pump. During the day and before going to sleep please carefully check that your insulin pump is delivering insulin and there are no leakages. Never change treatment delivery methods without first consulting a relevant healthcare professional. Failure of insulin delivery due to leakage may not result in an alert notification from the insulin pump and cracks and leakages may not always be visible. You should check blood glucose levels multiple times throughout your day whilst using pumps. Tell your healthcare professional immediately if you suspect a problem with your insulin delivery. Read full story Source: Gov.UK, 26 May 2022
  22. News Article
    Major differences in the rate of foot amputations for people with diabetes in England are incredibly concerning, patient groups say. Such amputations are a sign patients have not received adequate care, as poorly controlled diabetes increases the risk of foot ulcers and infections. One in 10 areas had "significantly higher rates", government data shows. There was nearly a five-fold difference between the best and worst when taking into account risk factors such as age. The government data - published by the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities - looked at the three years leading up to the pandemic. It is believed up to 80% of foot amputations could be avoided with better care. Diabetes UK said the figures "shined a light on the scale of the crisis facing diabetes care" and it warned access to support was likely to have become worse during the pandemic. A report produced by the charity earlier this month said lives would be needlessly lost because of disruption to services over the past two years. Diabetes UK chief executive Chris Askew said the latest figures were "incredibly concerning". "The majority of these major amputations are preventable, but many people living with diabetes are struggling to access the care they need - and in areas of higher deprivation, people are experiencing worse outcomes. These inequalities must be addressed." Read full story Source: BBC News, 27 April 2022
  23. News Article
    Thousands of lives are being put at risk due to delays and disruption in diabetes care, according to a damning report that warns patients have been “pushed to the back of the queue” during the Covid-19 pandemic. There are 4.9 million people living with diabetes in the UK, and almost half had difficulties managing their condition last year, according to a survey of 10,000 patients by the charity Diabetes UK. More than 60% of them attributed this partly to a lack of access to healthcare, which can prevent serious illness and early mortality from the cardiovascular complications of diabetes, rising to 71% in the most deprived areas of the country. One in three had no contact with healthcare professionals about their diabetes in 2021, while one in six have still not had contact since before the pandemic, the report by the charity said. Diabetes UK said that while ministers have focused on tackling the elective surgery backlog, diabetes patients have lost out as a result, and there is now an urgent need to get services back on track before lives are “needlessly lost”. Chris Askew, the chief executive of Diabetes UK, called for a national diabetes recovery plan. “Diabetes is serious and living with it can be relentless,” he said. “If people with diabetes cannot receive the care they need, they can risk devastating, life-altering complications and, sadly, early death. “We know the NHS has worked tirelessly to keep us safe throughout the pandemic, but the impacts on care for people living with diabetes have been vast. While the UK government has been focused on cutting waiting lists for operations and other planned care, people with diabetes have been pushed to the back of the queue.” Read full story Source: The Guardian, 20 April 2022
  24. News Article
    Nearly 900 patients with type 1 diabetes in England are testing a potentially life-changing artificial pancreas. It can eliminate the need for finger prick tests and prevent life-threatening hypoglycaemic attacks, where blood sugar levels fall too low. The technology uses a sensor under the skin. It continually monitors the levels, and a pump automatically adjusts the amount of insulin required. Six-year-old Charlotte, from Lancashire, is one of more than 200 children using the hybrid closed loop system. Her mother, Ange Abbott, told us it has made a massive impact on the whole family. "Prior to having the loop, everything was manual," she said. "At night we'd have to set the alarm every two hours to do finger pricks and corrections of insulin in order to deal with the ups and downs of Charlotte's blood sugars." Prof Partha Kar, NHS national speciality adviser for diabetes, said: "Having machines monitor and deliver medication for diabetes patients sounds quite sci-fi like, but technology and machines are part and parcel of how we live our lives every day. "It is not very far away from the holy grail of a fully automated system, where people with type 1 diabetes can get on with their lives without worrying about glucose levels or medication." Read full story Source: BBC News, 1 April 2022 Further reading on the hub How safe are closed loop artificial pancreas systems?
  25. News Article
    Everyone with type 1 diabetes in England should be offered some form of continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) technology to support their care, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended. Updated draft guidelines published on 31 March recommend that all adults with type 1 diabetes should be offered a choice of either real time or intermittent (flash) CGM through a sensor attached to the skin as part of their ongoing NHS care. NICE also recommends that all young people aged 4 years and over with type 1 diabetes should be offered real time CGM and that some people with type 2 diabetes who use insulin intensive therapy (4 or more injections a day) should have access to Flash. Read full story (paywalled) Source: BMJ, 31 March 2022 Read NICE guidelines here.
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