The findings from this Healthwatch Kingston Pulse check report are drawn jointly from a focus group discussion, held in association with the Kingston branch of Diabetes UK, as well as returns to an online survey which was featured on the Healthwatch Kingston website for the months of October and November 2021. In total 40 respondents (23 survey respondents/17 focus group attendees) between the ages of 25 to over 80 expressed their views, the majority of whom were approximately pensionable age. We also provide examples of what people shared with us. Healthwatch Kingston would like to note that whereas some participants did praise elements of their diabetes care, others were not as content.
Key messages include:
- Some participants believed there to be inconsistences between GP surgeries in the way diabetic conditions were being treated and supported.
- Covid-19 had impacted on diabetes treatment, with a reduction in annual eye tests changing to every two years.
- Annual diabetes checks at GP surgeries were perceived as being a “tick box” exercise for the benefit of the practice as opposed to being of assistance to the patient.
- Some participants felt that they knew more about their condition than their GP.
- People newly diagnosed with diabetes had not been referred to available NHS services.
- There was uncertainty about being on the right medication or the correct dosage.
- Participants identified a need for better communication about diabetes, particularly to alleviate anxieties about food.
- 40 per cent of respondents to the survey said they would make use of diabetes-specific supervised exercise classes.
Local diabetes service offer
To find out about support available for people living with and affected by diabetes in the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames, and also support for professionals go to: