Healthcare Professionals

Don’t delay, refer your patient today

Structured education:

  • Increases patient confidence
  • Helps patients feel more in control
  • Reduces complications and hospital admissions
  • Improves long term outcomes
  • Saves NHS budget

Diabetes UK in ‘Diabetes Education: the big missed opportunity in diabetes care’ provides the evidence base of medical trials which prove that attending NHS approved structured education courses improves a range of clinical, lifestyle and psychological outcomes for patients.

How can GPs and other healthcare professionals help?

NICE guidelines on Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes care states that GPs and other healthcare professionals should refer and actively encourage patients with diabetes to book and attend structured education because it is an integral part of their diabetes care.

Diabetes UK says that ‘People with diabetes spend only three hours a year with a healthcare professional on average. For the remaining 8,757 hours they manage their diabetes themselves.’


‘Diabetes education is key to successful day-to-day diabetes management and can be life-changing for people with diabetes.’ (Diabetes UK)

So please help us get the word out by actively encouraging patients, friends and colleagues who are living with diabetes to book and attend the courses they need to live well with diabetes.

Patients can self-refer using the contact us page or find their local information sessions using our postcode search.

Find out how education can make dealing with diabetes easier.

NICE Guidelines – type 2 diabetes

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) guidance is that adults with Type 2 diabetes are offered structured education programmes such as DESMOND at diagnosis (2011, updated 2016) as an integral part of their diabetes care.

The rationale stated by NICE is as follows:

“Type 2 diabetes is a progressive long-term medical condition that the person predominantly self-manages. Managing Type 2 diabetes involves lifestyle changes, and treatment can be complex. Structured education programmes can help adults with Type 2 diabetes to improve their knowledge and skills and also help to motivate them to take control of their condition and self-manage it effectively.”

NICE Guidelines – type 1 diabetes

NICE guidance regarding education and information for people diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes is that they are offered a structured education programme of proven benefit, for example the DAFNE (dose adjustment for normal eating) programme 6 – 12 months after diagnosis.

If it has not been undertaken by 12 months after the diagnosis, then it should be offered at a time that is clinically appropriate and suitable for the person, regardless of the duration of Type 1 diabetes.

Its recommendations include explaining to the adult with Type 1 diabetes that structured education is an integral part of diabetes care.

Recommendations (1.4 Dietary Management) state that carbohydrate counting training should be offered to adults with Type 1 who are waiting for a more detailed structured education programme or who are unable to take part in structured education programmes.