New guidance issued during National Diabetes Week

Posted on 09/06/2014 by


Type 1 Diabetes cases continue to rise

diabetes week

New guidance will be issued to schools and parents from this week to help them support children with Type 1 diabetes. It comes as the annual Scottish Diabetes Survey, published this weekend, shows the number of cases of Type 1 diabetes continues to rise. The number of people with Type 1 diabetes has increased from 26,294 in 2006 to 29,251 in 2014 – an increase of 11.3 per cent.

The new guidelines – ‘Supporting Children and Young People with Type 1 Diabetes in Education’ – set out the responsibilities of local councils, schools, parents and young people. It includes advice on exam planning, injecting and storing insulin, blood glucose monitoring, eating, and physical activity in school.

The guidance brings together, for the first time, some of the best policies that are in place around Scotland. It has been produced in collaboration with teachers, parents, young people and healthcare professionals, and will be distributed to schools and colleges throughout Scotland. It will also be available online.

The booklet has been produced by the Childhood & Adolescent Subgroup of the Scottish Diabetes Group and Diabetes Scotland, with funding from the Scottish Government.

According to the Scottish Diabetes Survey there were 3,733 under 20s with Type 1 diabetes in Scotland at the end of 2013, and 1,860 under 15. The total number of people with diabetes is 268,154, of which 29,261 have type 1, 10.9 per cent of the total.

The increase of Type 1 cases reflects the rising incidence in children, and that people with the condition are now living longer. Type 1 is primarily an inherited condition.

The Scottish Government is taking a number of steps to deal with the increased cases of Type 1 diabetes, mainly focused on early diagnosis and improving access to insulin treatments.

Michael Matheson, Minister for Public Health, said: “This new set of guidelines is a clear and accessible way for teachers and parents to get the information they need about how to care for children with Type 1 diabetes.

“There’s no reason why a child with diabetes shouldn’t play a full and active role in school life. However, it’s vital that teachers, parents and young people know how to prevent any problems, and that’s why these guidelines will be so useful.

“Cases of Type 1 diabetes are rising in most western countries, and Scotland is no exception. That’s why this document, and all our other work in this area, is so important in improving the health of people living with type 1 diabetes in Scotland.

Claire Judson, National Director of Diabetes Scotland, said “It is a human right for children to be able to access education and not miss a day’s school. The care of children with Type 1 diabetes is a team effort, which requires all participants to play an active part in ensuring that that the child or young person has the best possible start in life and can succeed for the future. This document highlights the responsibilities of each of the partners involved to give a complete picture of what is needed so that children and young people with Type 1 diabetes are healthy and safe.

“I hope that all schools and local authorities will use this guidance in collaboration with children, parents and paediatric diabetes teams, so that children can manage their condition and receive the appropriate provision of care. Education is the gateway to a healthier adult life and creating opportunities for the future.”