Care Homes Lack Diabetes Knowledge
Following the first ever England-wide Diabetes care Home Audit the Institute of Diabetes for Older People has called for care homes to screen in a bid to detect undiagnosed residents with the condition. Audit lead and Director of IDOP, Professor Alan Sinclair said:
"We appreciate the strain placed on care home staff but the results of the audit demonstrated major concerns which need urgent attention."
“The results found one in 10 care home residents were reported as having diabetes, although this figure is at odds with previous research that showed as many as 26 per cent of all care home residents actually have diabetes."
“However, we also know there are masses of people with diabetes in care homes who are undiagnosed. The longer it takes them to become diagnosed, the more their health will suffer, leading to the potential of the development of unseen complications. Screening for diabetes should be a fundamental policy for every care home.”
Recommendations from the audit include:
- Self medicating patients should be monitored and assessed regularly
- Care homes should have a policy in place for screening on admission and regular intervals thereafter
- Care homes should provide opportunities for staff to participate in training schemes
- Care homes should have a fully stocked hypoglycaemia kit
The survey, conducted in 2012-2013 audited over 2,000 care homes and found that 60% did not have a designated member of staff for managing diabetes. The audit also found that over a third of residents were not aware of rhe signs and symptoms of hypoglycaemia.