GPs need more time to discuss lifestyle changes with diabetes patients, says College

Publication date: 08 November 2018

Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, has responded to a new report from NHS Digital about diabetes care.

She said: "Prescribing is a core skill for GPs, and we are highly-trained to make decisions about a patient's care based on their individual needs, in their best interests, and in conversation with them.
 
"For many patients with diabetes, medication is essential to help them manage their condition and live a good quality of life.
 
"But we also know that making straightforward lifestyle changes, for example, eating a healthy and balanced diet, losing weight and exercising more can prevent, delay, or sometimes even reverse Type 2 diabetes.
 
"GPs and our teams will have these often quite sensitive conversations with our patients, but our profession is currently operating under intense resource pressures and there is a limit to what we can realistically do within the constraints of the standard 10-minute consultation – and offering longer appointments means offering fewer appointments at a time when patients are already waiting too long to see their GP.
 
"Ultimately, we need to see the delivery of NHS England's GP Forward View, which promises an extra £2.4bn for general practice and 5,000 more GPs, as well as our additional ask of £2.5bn extra a year as part of the forthcoming NHS long-term plan, to ensure we can give more time to all of our patients, including those with diabetes."
 

Further Information

RCGP Press office: 020 3188 7574/7575/7633/7410
Out of hours: 0203 188 7659
press@rcgp.org.uk

Notes to editor

The Royal College of General Practitioners is a network of more than 52,000 family doctors working to improve care for patients. We work to encourage and maintain the highest standards of general medical practice and act as the voice of GPs on education, training, research and clinical standards.

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