MSP Colin Beattie has welcomed the success of a trial programme which has seen dramatic changes in the care of patients who have diabetes.
The ‘Think, Check, Act’ programme run by Healthcare Improvement Scotland’s Quality Improvement Hub, and funded by Scottish Government, has seen significant improvements in the care of patients who have diabetes.
Test wards, one of which was in the Lothians, saw a 20 per cent reduction in the incidence of hypoglycaemia – a potentially dangerous drop in blood sugar. In one ward, appropriate management of hypoglycaemia increased from 39 per cent to 92 per cent.
Mr Beattie, who has type 2 diabetes and shed 16 kilos last year in an effort to combat the long term effects of the disease, said: “I’m delighted that NHS Lothian has been able to benefit from this important trial.
“Improving the care people with diabetes receive in hospitals is hugely important and I am glad to see progress being made.
“Diabetes is a priority for the SNP in government and it is important that we get the care for patients right, both in the primary and secondary care settings.
“The results of this programme are hugely encouraging and I look forward to seeing other NHS boards take up the initiative and see similar results for patients.
“Our NHS is our most important public resource – and the SNP will do everything we can to ensure that it properly funded and protected as a public service.”
The programme included an education package for ward staff, use of visual reminders in the ward environment, the introduction of ‘hypo boxes’ - ready-made kits for the treatment and prevention of hypoglycaemia, training in improvement methods and support from improvement experts.
Between 15 to 20 per cent of all hospital inpatients have diabetes.
The aims of the programme are to reduce complications associated with hospital stays, improve the care that patients receive, regardless of which ward provides their care, as well as reducing the cost to the NHS.