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Diabetes care in Reading, Wokingham and West Berkshire

Care Planning in Berkshire

We have started training health care professionals in Care Planning across Berkshire West. Care Planning enables individuals with diabetes to take an active role in the management of their disease.

(Care planning information for healthcare professionals is available here)

Claire in care planning

Claire Scott, Care Planning lead, conducting a Care Planning consultation with a patient

What is care planning?

Care planning is a process that allows you to be actively involved in deciding, agreeing and owning how your diabetes is managed.

What does care planning involve?

The care planning process is linked to your yearly diabetes check-ups and encourages you to think about what you might like to discuss once you have the results from your diabetes checks and measurements.

Before your yearly diabetes appointment you will be asked to attend the surgery to have all of your checks and measurements completed. The results of these checks will be sent to you in the post to arrive prior to your annual review. They will include your diabetes control, blood pressure, cholesterol and blood fats, kidney tests, weight and body mass index, sleep assessment and smoking status.

Receiving your results in this way gives you the chance to think about what the results mean to you and what you might like to discuss.

At your appointment with the healthcare professional you will be able to discuss the results, share stories about your health and well being, set goals and create an action plan to help you manage your diabetes. For example if your weight has increased you may decide to agree a healthy eating plan.

Receiving care in this way

Care planning is not about making you do something that you don't feel comfortable with. It recognises that some people will want more control than others. Care planning gives you the opportunity to take control of your own care and make informed decisions in order to manage your diabetes effectively.

You can see a short video about care planning here

Care Planning will be introduced over the next two years in Berkshire West. Ask your Practice Nurse or GP for more information.

Annual review

Until care planning is rolled out, you will continue to have have an Annual Review with your doctor or practice nurse.

As part of your diabetes care, it is really important that you have your condition reviewed each year.  At most surgeries, this is done by the practice nurse and/or your GP.  If you happen to miss your appointment for any reason, it is vital that you contact the surgery to make another one.

During your annual review, you will be asked how you have felt over the previous months. You will have blood taken to measure your blood glucose (the HbA1c test), cholesterol and to check that your kidneys are working well; you will also have a urine test.  You will also be weighed, your blood pressure will be recorded and your feet will be checked.

Your GP or practice nurse will discuss all your blood results with you; including the levels from your record of home testing if you do this, any fasting blood sugar levels taken and the average levels shown by the HbA1c test. These results, along with all the other measures taken, will be used to allow your healthcare team to assess if the medication and treatment you are currently prescribed is working well or if it needs to be changed.

It is a good idea if you ask to have all your blood, and other, results explained to you so that you understand what is happening regarding your condition.  Your doctor or nurse would be very happy to go through these with you and will explain what your results mean. By knowing more about and understanding your diabetes, you are more able to monitor your own condition at home and be alert to any changes.

Diabetes UK has produced Monitoring your health. This includes information about blood glucose levels, blood pressure and blood fat levels (lipids) as well as the condition of your feet and getting your eyes checked for retinopathy.

Care Planning information for Heathcare Professionals is available here.