What your diabetes care team will do

What your diabetes care team will do

Your diabetes care team will help and support you to manage your diabetes, including your insulin treatment. You will need to go to the diabetes clinic (usually at the hospital) or be in contact with your care team regularly – for example, by phone or email.

You will also have a thorough check‑up every year – your 'annual review'. This involves several checks that may happen at different times and in different places.

Your diabetes care team will work closely with you, and you can ask for help or advice at any time. What the team does will depend on how long you have had diabetes for and how well managed it is, but should include:

  • discussing your insulin treatment, and reviewing with you how you take it

  • discussing testing your blood glucose, reviewing with you how you do it and agreeing targets with you

  • testing your HbA1c levels (which reflect your average blood glucose level over the last 2 to 3 months) at least every 3 to 6 months, and agreeing targets with you

  • explaining about the symptoms, risks and treatment of hypos

  • giving you advice and support about your type 1 diabetes, including details about support groups

  • offering you a course that helps you to learn more about type 1 diabetes, including working out how the foods you eat affect your blood glucose and how to adjust your insulin to match

  • looking at whether you have cardiovascular disease and your risk of getting it in future

  • making sure you have regular eye screening

  • making sure you have regular foot checks (as part of your annual review)

  • checking for other long‑term complications that can be caused by type 1 diabetes, such as problems with your kidneys or nerves

  • keeping a lookout for anxiety, depression and eating disorders (which can be more common in people with type 1 diabetes), and offering treatment and referral to specialists if needed

  • checking for other conditions that are more common in people with type 1 diabetes, such as thyroid disease, coeliac disease and other autoimmune conditions.

Your care team should agree an ongoing care plan with you (which may be different from your early care plan) that suits your lifestyle and takes any cultural preferences into account. You and your care team can agree changes to this care plan if your circumstances or wishes change.

If it is possible that you could get pregnant, you should be given information about contraception and family planning. NICE has produced guidance and information for the public about diabetes in pregnancy (see other NICE guidance).

Questions to ask about your care

  • Please tell me more about living with type 1 diabetes

  • How often will I need to visit the diabetes clinic? Who will I see there?

  • Where will I have to go for check‑ups?

  • What sorts of health problems are more common in people with type 1 diabetes? What can I do to help prevent these?

  • Who should I contact if I have any questions or am worried about my diabetes?

  • Can you give me written information? What websites are helpful?

  • Can you point me towards any local or national support groups?

  • Information Standard