Further Investigation Needed On Diabetes Amputation Rates

Expert Comments On 'Postcode Lottery' Concerns

08.03.2012

A medical lawyer at Irwin Mitchell has called on the Government and NHS to fully investigate new concerns that there are significant regional variations in amputation rates for diabetes patients across England.

Reports have revealed that the study, published in the Diabetologia journal, looked at rates across local health trusts over a three-year period and raised concerns that some were around 10 times higher in certain areas.

According to experts behind the research, the figures should highlight the need to ensure the right specialist care is available to all diabetes patients.
 
Clinical negligence experts at Irwin Mitchell, who act for people who have suffered serious illness or injury as a result of failings in their care at NHS hospitals across the UK, have welcomed the calls for an improvement in organisation and training when it comes to foot care and disease.

James Thompson, solicitor and medical law expert at the firm’s Leeds office, said: “The suggestion that the quality of care a patient receives could be dependent on where they are treated is a massive concern, as no one should face a postcode lottery when it comes to any kind of treatment from the NHS.

“An improvement in both consistency and training appears vital to tacking this issue, ensuring that all medical staff across NHS hospitals have the necessary skills to provide the highest quality of   treatment and support to those in their care.

“Through our work we have seen the trauma and heartache which can be caused when people have not been given the quality treatment and care they deserve.

“It is essential that a serious examination is undertaken into how these variations in amputation rates have arisen, with a view to learning lessons and improving patient safety.”