Diabetes UK welcomes changes to local diabetes services

16 December 2013

Diabetes UK welcomes changes to local diabetes services

National charity Diabetes UK and people living with diabetes have welcomed an innovative new five-year contract for the delivery of adult diabetes services awarded by the North East Essex Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). Patient feedback and their involvement in the procurement process means more services will be accessible at a community level from April 2014, reducing the need for hospital visits.

The service for the 17,000 people living with diabetes in the Colchester and Tendring areas will be delivered by Suffolk GP Federation, a not-for-profit organisation, which will work with local GP practices in the Colchester and Tendring areas and with Colchester Hospital University Foundation Trust.

The terms of the contract have been innovatively developed by North East Essex CCG so that 25% of Suffolk GP Federation’s income will be based on results. These include the achievement of top quarter placements in national performance tables for HbA1c (a blood test which checks diabetes is under control) and for cholesterol. The completion of annual reviews and ensuring all newly diagnosed people with diabetes receive the right education about their condition will also be paid by results.

Sharon Roberts, Eastern Regional Manager, Diabetes UK, said: “Diabetes UK and the local Service Champion were actively involved throughout the project, ensuring that feedback from people living with diabetes was taken on board and that the best provider was selected. It was a very thorough approach to engaging people in the improvement of their health care services.”

People living with diabetes, Patient Forums in Colchester and Tendring, as well as healthcare professionals, will be consulted about the final plans for the service before it launches in April 2014.

Dr Gary Sweeney, Chair of the CCG Board, said: “Outcomes for our patients do need to be improved, and I’m confident that the new service will do that, more effectively meeting patients’ needs. Suffolk GP Federation demonstrated it could meet our criteria for improving quality and the patient experience, whilst ensuring overall cost does not increase. We are very pleased to award them this contract.”

The Chair of Suffolk GP Federation, Dr Tim Reed, said: “This is a pioneering contract both in terms of the payment by results and in the way it provides an integrated approach for patients, who will find it easier to book and attend their diabetes appointments by using a single point of contact and by accessing higher level care locally to where they live. To achieve this we will be working very closely with all the GP practices in the Colchester and Tendring areas and with Colchester Hospital who will provide specialist care and clinics for those with complex needs.”