ThinkGlucose toolkit

Why ThinkGlucose?

ThinkGlucose is an NHS Institute programme designed to support hospital trusts to deliver a clinical pathway that improves the management of in-patients with diabetes as a secondary diagnosis. ThinkGlucose offers the average Trust potential savings of £1m per annum from length of stay reductions alone.

What are the key issues?

The provision of consistent, effective and proactive inpatient care for people with diabetes is still inadequate in the NHS, leaving patients with a poor experience in terms of their diabetes treatment. National data confirms that, on average, a patient with diabetes spends longer in hospital than a patient without diabetes – despite being admitted for the same procedure or condition.

At any one time, at least 10% of inpatients have known diabetes and this figure may be as high as 25% in some high risk groups. Furthermore, both the percentage of the population with diabetes, and those at high risk of contracting diabetes, is rising (it is expected that the number of people with diabetes will grow by 50,000 pa).

How will ThinkGlucose address these issues?

The ThinkGlucose programme provides a package of tried and tested products, learning and support to improve awareness and remove the obstacles to the treatment of patients with diabetes as a secondary diagnosis. Implementing a clinical pathway will improve the patient experience and the quality of their care, thereby reducing the length of stay and releasing more time to treat the increasing numbers of people with diabetes.

Why should you do it?

The NHS teams who played such an important part in helping to develop and test the toolkit reported a range of benefits:

What went up:

  • Overall quality of care
  • Patient safety
  • Bed efficiency
  • Diabetes team utilisation
  • Knowledge and awareness among hospital staff
  • Patient satisfaction
  • Income (due to more accurate coding
  • Staff satisfaction
  • Resource efficiency levels

What came down

  • Length of stay
  • Insulin drug errors
  • Other adverse incidents
  • Cancelled operations/procedures
  • Complaints
  • Delays in discharge
  • Inappropriate referrals to the specialist team.

Financial benefits include

A cost reduction for the average trust of around £1m per annum from reduced length of stay (a figure established from work in the four test sites).

What’s in the box?

The toolkit consists of:

  • A welcome card
  • ThinkGlucose promotional guide and pack
  • ThinkGlucose implementation guide - What can ThinkGlucose do for you?
  • ThinkGlucose executive guide - What can it do for your organisation?
  • Measures for improvement - How are we doing?
  • Making a case for improvement tool - Service transformation – the next level.
  • Patient stories - Understanding the patient experience
  • Top tips for coding tool - Easy ways to ensure more accurate coding of diabetes.
  • Safe use of insulin tool - Supporting safety and choice
  • ThinkGlucose patient assessment tool - Fast effective, safer care.
  • ThinkGlucose a different view DVD
  • ThinkGlucose resource CD

The resource box

A separate resource box contains a quantity of promotional items designed to raise awareness and support the ThinkGlucose campaign.