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Diabetes patients missing out on vital tests

21st February 2012

According to the BBC, health service data has shown that less than a tenth of diabetes patients in some parts of England are given the option of having full tests carried out.

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This means an estimated 1.3 million people are not given vitally important tests which could save their lives.

The tests look for early warnings of conditions linked to diabetes, such as kidney failure, gangrene and blindness. 

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidance states that primary care trusts should make sure every diabetic person under their care receives nine health checks every year.

The tests include checks to measure blood sugar levels, blood pressure and cholesterol.

Data from the National Diabetes Audit for England showed that although some trusts give the tests to 60% of patients, many fail to provide nine tests to 50% of their patients and some test less than a tenth of their patients.

Paul Burstow, Minister of State at the Department of Health, said to File on 4: "It's outrageous, it's unacceptable, and that's why we published the information that exposed this in the first place."

"The guidance is there, the best practice is understood and we need to make sure that best practice is adopted." 

 

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