What Diabetes Care Should You receive?
Diabetes UK has developed a list of 15 healthcare essentials that you should receive as part of your routine Diabetes Care
If you or someone you know has diabetes, there's a minimum level of care
that ever person deserves and should expect from their health service.
Getting all the checks, seeing the right healthcare professionals and
understanding your diabetes are all essential in helping you
manage your condition.
Use this checklist to make sure you're getting all the care you need.
If you aren't, take it to your diabetes healthcare team and raise the issue with them.
Get your blood glucose levels measured
You should have an annual HbA1c blood test to measure your overall blood glucose control.
Although there are recommended targets, no two people with diabetes are the same and your
target should have been agreed by you and your diabetes healthcare team.
Have your blood pressure measured
You should have your blood pressure taken and recorded at least once a year.
There are recommended targets but you should have a target that is right for you.
Have your blood fats (cholesterol) measured
You should have an annual blood test to measure your cholesterol level.
Like blood glucose and blood pressure, you should have your own target that
is realistic and achievable
Have your eyes looked at
You have the right to have your eyes screened for signs of retinopathy every year.
Using a specialised digital camera, a photo of your eyes is taken and then examined
by a specialist who is looking for any changes to your retina
(the seeing part at the back of your eye).
Have your legs and feet checked
The skin, circulation and nerve supply of your legs and feet should be checked annually.
If there is any risk to your limbs, you should be referred to a podiatrist or
specialist foot clinic.
Have your kidney functions monitored
You should have two tests for your kidneys each year. A urine test checks for protein -
a sign of possible kidney problems - and a blood test measuring the rate at
which blood is filtered by the kidneys.
Have your weight checked
You should be weighed and have your waist measured to see
if you need to loose weight.
Get support if you are a smoker
You should receive advice and support on how to quit. Having diabetes already puts
people at increased risk of heart disease and stroke, and smoking
further increase the risk.
Receive care planning to meet your individual needs
You live with diabetes every day so you should have a say about every aspect of your care.
Your yearly care plan should be agreed as a result of a discussion between you
and your diabetes healthcare team, where you talk about your individual needs and set targets.
Attend an education course
You should have the chance to attend an education course to help you
understand and manage diabetes. There are courses for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes,
such as DAFNE, DESMOND, X-PERT and DYFFD.
Receive paediatric care if you are a child or young person
You should get care from specialist diabetes paediatric healthcare professionals.
When the time comes to leave paediatric care, you should know exactly what
to expect so you have a smooth change over to adult health services.
Receive high quality care if admitted to hospital
If you have to stay in hospital, you should still continue to receive
high-quality diabetes care from specialist diabetes healthcare professionals,
regardless of whether you have been admitted due to your diabetes or not.
Get information and specialist care if you are planning to have a baby
Having a baby means that your diabetes control has to be a lot tighter
and monitored very closely. You should expect care and support from
specialist healthcare professionals at every stage from
preconception to post-natal care.
See specialist diabetes healthcare professionals
Diabetes affects different parts of the body. To help you manage your diabetes,
you may need to see or be referred to specialist professionals such as
ophthalmologist, podiatrist or dietician. Diabetes UK believed that
you should have the opportunity to see a specialist if and when the need arises
Get emotional and psychological support
Being diagnosed and living with diabetes can be difficult.
You should be able to talk about your issues and concerns with
specialist healthcare professionals. Being happy as
well as healthy is really important.