Under 40s with type 2 diabetes less likely to receive all health checks, audit finds

Under 40s with type 2 diabetes less likely to receive all health checks, audit finds

People living with type 2 diabetes under the age of 40 are less likely to receive all their healthcare checks compared to those who are older, according to the National Diabetes Audit. 

Between January 2021 and March 2022, more than 139,000 children, young people and adults under 40 had type 2 diabetes in England and Wales.

The data has revealed that the number of type 2 diabetes cases under the age of 40 rose faster than in those aged 40 to 79.

Compared to people aged 40 and over with type 2 diabetes, those under the age of 40 living with the condition were more likely to be living in deprived areas. They are also more likely to be Asian or mixed ethnicity and female.

In addition, those under the age of 40 with type 2 diabetes were less likely to achieve blood glucose targets if they lived in deprived areas and had diabetes for longer.

According to the audit, adverse diabetes and cardiovascular outcomes are more common in people who develop type 2 diabetes at an earlier age, and it is thought the numbers of affected individuals are increasing.

The audit has now recommended that commissioners of care should:

Optimise access to and uptake of the Diabetes Prevention Programme which is designed to prevent onset of type 2 diabetes and support remission for those aged 18
Work with primary and secondary care diabetes services to reduce age, ethnicity and deprivation related inequalities
Work with healthcare providers to achieve recommended glucose and blood pressure control, achieve cardiovascular risk reduction and reduce adverse foetal and maternal pregnancy outcomes.

The National Diabetes Audit (NDA) and the National Paediatric Diabetes Audit (NPDA) provide a comprehensive view of diabetes care in England and Wales.

They measure the effectiveness of diabetes healthcare against NICE Clinical Guidelines and Quality Standards.

To read the latest audit, click here.

Author: Philip Lopez