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GPs should refer immediately when type 1 diabetes is suspected in young patients, says NICE



NICE has updated diabetes guidelines to promote better adherence to normal blood glucose levels among young people with type 1 or 2 diabetes, and to ensure suspected cases of type 1 diabetes have rapid referrals.

The guidance for children and young patients recommends giving a same-day referral to the multidisciplinary paediatrics diabetes team when type 1 diabetes is suspected, to ensure quick diagnosis and care can be provided.

It also recommends explaining to young patients and their families that achieving daily blood glucose and HbA1c levels as near to normal as possible will help prevent long-term complications, and that they should routinely take five capillary blood glucose tests a day to help monitor this.

The new guidelines also cover adults with type 1 diabetes and recommend lowering target HbA1c levels for adults, to 48mmol/mol (6.5%) or lower.

Sir Andrew Dillon, chief executive of NICE, said: ‘The standard of diabetes care varies across the NHS. These updated guidelines are designed to help more people to receive the best treatment and support.

‘They recommend effective and cost effective care and advice to NHS organisations on such things as setting up specialist services to reduce risk of diabetes-related amputation. Implementing these recommendations will help prevent serious illnesses linked to diabetes.’