The challenges of caring for older people with diabetes will be a key topic at the Diabetes Professional Care 2018 (DPC2018) conference when the show returns to Olympia, London on November 14 and 15.
Expert on diabetes in older people to speak at DPC2018
Not only are older people more likely to be diagnosed with diabetes but they’re at greater risk of multiple co-morbidities. Yet, say experts, they’re not receiving the individualised care they need.
One speaker addressing this issue at DPC2018 will be Professor Alan Sinclair, director, Foundation for Diabetes Research in Older People, Diabetes Frail, with his session on individualising diabetes care for older people with a focus on frailty.
Prof Sinclair, a recognised specialist in the field of diabetes among older people, has carried out a number of research papers into the subject, more recently investigating diabetes services in care home settings.
“Our review of research findings is quite worrying because we’ve found the level of diabetes care remains fragmented, which means many older people are becoming far more vulnerable to poor health than they should be,” he says.
“We believe more than a quarter of care home residents have type 2 diabetes, and it’s imperative those with the condition – at whatever age or domicile – carry out proper management. If the patient fails to control their diabetes, it can lead to frailty, dependency, disability and reduced life expectancy.
“There is also the added strain on the NHS as frequent hospital admissions to treat diabetes-related complications are costly, not to mention unsettling for the patient and family.”
Prof Sinclair’s session will provide a clearer understanding of the complexity of diabetes as an illness in old age and the importance of individualised care.
“High-quality individualised care for older people with diabetes would be hugely beneficial,” he says. “Multiple comorbidities associated with ageing, combined with the increased prevalence of geriatric syndromes and frailty, contribute to the complexity of managing diabetes in older people.
“If healthcare professionals and care home teams recognise these unique challenges then we can begin finding solutions, addressing the declining diabetes health of this vulnerable sector of people who deserve the best possible level of care.”
DPC2018’s TREND-UK and Injection Technique Theatre will also include sessions on caring for older people with diabetes, delivered by Jill Hill, independent diabetes nurse consultant, TREND-UK. These will include: frailty and dementia care, district, practice and community nursing, new TREND-UK guidelines; and diabetes care at the end of life.
DPC2018 is CPD-accredited and free to attend for health professionals. For more information on these sessions and to register for your free place at DPC2018, visit the website at www.diabetesprofessionalcare.com