Shortage of diabetes nurses leaves children in danger

Tue, 17 Feb 2009
According to a diabetes research report issued by diabetes charity Diabetes UK, a shortage of paediatric diabetes specialist nurses could be endangering the lives of many children with diabetes .

Children suffering from the chronic disease are facing a greater risk of hypoglycaemic episodes and long-term complications including blindness, kidney failure and amputations .

According to the report, some PDSNs look after over 150 children, a huge case load that could be affecting the quality of care each child receives.

The chief executive of the charity, Douglas Smallwood, was reported in the news as commenting: "This situation needs to be addressed urgently. Specialist nurses play a vital role in diabetes care and management. With many nurses having to cope with more than twice the recommended number of children, it is no wonder four out of five children have poor blood glucose control. Services must improve now otherwise our children risk developing serious, long term complications of diabetes such as losing their sight or needing kidney dialysis in later life. The Government promised six years ago to improve specialist care and ensure a healthy future for all children with diabetes, but standards remain patchy. It's high time they delivered on their promise."
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