5 September 2011
Some little hearts must have gone pit-a-pat when they read of a large expenditure increase on diabetes in the UK. When you read the small print, it became clear that the expenditure was on diabetes research, not on diabetes management.
However, it doesn’t do any harm to dream does it? So, if you were given, say, £5,000 to spend in your practice, how would you spend it?
No, you are not allowed to treat all staff to a slap-up meal! The money has to be spent on improving the care of patients with diabetes.
Another thing that would not be allowed would be to spend the money on newer drugs, ignoring current treatment pathways and evidence.
The options would be between spending on personnel or equipment.
With personnel you could, perhaps, employ additional staff, for instance a Health Care Assistant to improve the throughput of patients and free up the Practice Nurse to spend more time on patient education.
Present staff could undertake the Diabetes Management in Primary Care training course. However, in some areas, this is already part-funded.
Do you have a podiatrist or a dietitian present during your diabetes clinic?
If I had not already got one, I would very definitely make a pitch for a DCA2000 HbA1c estimator which takes only six minutes to provide a very accurate HbA1c level. Many patients have to make two visits to the surgery (other than their annual review); one for blood tests and one for a consultation. The DCA2000 makes a “one stop” clinic a real possibility. And that is a real benefit for the patient.
What would YOU do?