Weekly diabetes parliamentary round-up

Our weekly diabetes parliamentary round-up is below. To see the full round-up please click for more at the bottom of the post.

House of Commons Questions

Jim Shannon – Diabetes

Tue, 24 November 2015 | House of Commons – Written Answer


Asked by Jim Shannon (Strangford) To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will commission structural education courses to prevent diabetes, in line with NICE guidance.

Answered by:
Jane Ellison
Answered on: 24 November 2015

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) Quality Standard for diabetes and guidance support the use of structured education for people diagnosed with diabetes to help them manage their condition.

The National Diabetes Prevention Programme (DPP) is a joint commitment from NHS England, Public Health England and Diabetes UK and will be the first national Type 2 diabetes prevention programme delivered at scale. People identified as being at high risk of diabetes will be referred onto intensive lifestyle management programmes which will support them to lose weight, improve their diet and be more physically active.

The DPP will link into the existing NHS Health Check programme, which invites adults between the ages of 40 and 74 for risk awareness, assessment and management of the key risk factors leading to premature death and disability in England.

Building on the DDP, the Department has committed to improving outcomes for those with, and at risk of, diabetes. We will announce our plans shortly.


Jim Shannon – Diabetes

Tue, 24 November 2015 | House of Commons – Written Answer


Asked by Jim Shannon (Strangford) To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will commission an independent five-year review of provision for diabetes.

Answered by:
Jane Ellison
Answered on: 24 November 2015

There are no current plans to commission an independent five-year review of provision of diabetes. However, The management of adult diabetes services in the NHS: progress review, published by the National Audit Office on 21 October 2015, provides a review of the progress made by the National Health Service since 2012 on improving services and achieving better outcomes for people with diabetes:


Jim Shannon – Diabetes

Tue, 24 November 2015 | House of Commons – Written Answer

Asked by Jim Shannon (Strangford) To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to ensure that (a) adults and (b) children undertake appropriate health checks to prevent diabetes complications.

Answered by:
Jane Ellison
Answered on: 24 November 2015

Public Health England (PHE) supports local authorities to implement the mandated NHS Health Checks programme. A routine part of NHS Health Checks involves assessing a person’s risk of type 2 diabetes and, for those at risk a diagnostic test is carried out for confirmation of diabetes.

The NHS Diabetic Eye Screening Programme aims to reduce the risk of sight loss among people with diabetes through early detection and timely treatment, if needed, of diabetic retinopathy.

The Healthy Child Programme ‘Pregnancy and the first five years of life’ provides five core reviews for all pregnant women and young children and provide a framework for health promoting and primary prevention activities around behaviours such as breast feeding, healthy nutrition, physical activity and healthy weight which will influence a child’s future health including onset of obesity and type 2 diabetes. The reviews are followed up with early intervention and targeted support for families where additional needs have been identified. The Healthy Child Programme ‘0-19’ provides advice and guidance including healthy weight management, nutrition, physical activity and support children with additional health needs including diabetes.

Improving outcomes for those with diabetes is of great concern to the Government. We will announce our plans in due course.

Jim Shannon – Diabetes

Tue, 24 November 2015 | House of Commons – Written Answer

Asked by Jim Shannon (Strangford) To ask the Secretary of State for Health, if he will review NHS diabetes dietary guidelines.

Answered by:
Jane Ellison
Answered on: 24 November 2015

Current dietary advice to people who have diabetes is the same as for the general population – that they should enjoy a healthy, balanced diet based on the eatwell plate, the national healthy eating guide.

In July 2015, the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) published its report on Carbohydrates and Health, a review of the latest evidence on dietary carbohydrates and health. SACN recommended reducing sugar consumption, increasing fibre consumption and minimising consumption of sugars-sweetened drinks.

Following publication, advice on what constitutes a healthy, balanced diet was updated to reflect the Government’s acceptance of SACN’s recommendations. As part of this Public Health England is undertaking a review of the eatwell plate and the refreshed resource will be launched in early 2016.

Mr Christopher Chope – Disability Living Allowance: Diabetes

Mon, 23 November 2015 | House of Commons – Written Answer


Asked by Mr Christopher Chope (Christchurch) To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when his Department’s review of guidance relating to the eligibility of children with Type 1 diabetes for Disability Living Allowance was initiated; and what conclusion that review reached.

Answered by:
Justin Tomlinson
Answered on: 23 November 2015

The current guidance for DLA decision makers on children with type 1 diabetes has been under review since March 2015. It is now near completion with conclusions reached in close collaboration with subject matter experts and will be published shortly.

Individual Politician Press Releases and Blogs

Keith Vaz MP – APPG for Diabetes Roundtable Meeting with Doctors

Thu, 26 November 2015 | MPs Press Release

Keith chaired a highly productive All Party Parliamentary Group for Diabetes meeting with over a dozen GPs and consultants on Wednesday 25th November 2015.

The discussion focused on some of the issues present in diabetes care across the United Kingdom, such as variations in care quality, information systems and education.

Keith was joined by fellow Parliamentarians George Howarth MP, Nia Griffith MP and Lord Rennard.


Andrew Stephenson MP – Andrew Stephenson MP backs new campaign calling for local action to improve access to diabetes education

Wed, 25 November 2015 | MPs Press Release

Pendle MP, Andrew Stephenson, is backing a new campaign by Diabetes UK that calls for local action to ensure that all people with diabetes have access to the education and support they need to manage their diabetes well.

The charity is launching a new campaign, Taking Control, to call for education for all people with diabetes to be commissioned everywhere, along with a proper local system that explains to people with diabetes the benefits they will gain from attending an education course and ensures that courses are well run.

At the moment for individuals newly diagnosed with diabetes, less than 1 per cent of people with Type 1 and just 3.8 per cent with Type 2 are recorded as receiving a diabetes education course.

Access to high-quality diabetes education is essential for people with diabetes as they have to manage their condition themselves on a daily basis, and may only see their healthcare professionals a few times a year.

The charity has warned that the poor delivery of diabetes education is fuelling devastating health complications for people with the condition and huge costs to the NHS. This is because failure to manage diabetes effectively can lead to life-threatening complications such as blindness, stroke and amputations. These complications cause personal devastation and are also extremely costly. The NHS spends nearly £10 billion annually on diabetes, 80 per cent of which is spent on treating potentially avoidable complications.

This is why Andrew Stephenson MP has added his voice to Diabetes UK’s campaign, which is calling for local health leaders to invest in diabetes education courses and increase the numbers of people who attend, and to promote the benefits of diabetes education to people living with the condition.

Andrew Stephenson MP said: “Diabetes is a very serious condition that can lead to devastating complications. This is why it is crucial that all people with diabetes have access to the support and education they need to help them manage their condition well. This would significantly reduce their risk of health complications, resulting in a reduction in the associated costs to the already stretched NHS both here in Pendle and across the country.

“I will be talking to local NHS leaders about what can be done to help ensure everyone with diabetes in Pendle gets the education and support they need to manage their condition well. And I have also written to the Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt to check that there are plans in place to support Clinical Commissioning Groups to invest in diabetes education courses.”

Robin Hewings, Diabetes UK Head of Policy, said: “We are pleased to have Andrew Stephenson MP’s support for our campaign that aims to help people with diabetes get the education they need to ‘take control’ of their condition. The poor provision of diabetes education is fuelling a health crisis that is leading to soaring rates of debilitating complications, premature death and huge costs to the NHS. Giving people with diabetes the support and information they need to stay healthy will save lives and money.”

The ‘Taking Control’ campaign is launching on Wednesday 11 November, ahead of World Diabetes Day on Saturday 14 November. Join the conversation on Twitter by using the hashtag #TakingControl.

To find out more about going on an education course, speak to your GP or healthcare professional. To find out more about the Taking Control campaign and how you can take action, visit


Westminster Committees

Health Committee – Report publication: Childhood obesity – brave and bold action

Wed, 25 November 2015 | Commons Select Committee Press Release

Health Committee

Select Committee Announcement

24 November 2015
For Immediate Release:


The Committee’s first report of Session 2015–16, Childhood obesity – brave and bold action will be published on Monday 30 November 2015 at 00.01 am (HC 465). Electronic embargoed copies of the Report will be available from 10.00 am on Friday 27 November.

Copies of the Report will be available in the following ways on publication:

  • Copies of the Report may be obtained from the usual outlets, including The Parliamentary Bookshop and The Stationery Office.
  • The Report will be posted on the Parliamentary internet on publication, and will be accessible via the Committee’s homepage.

The report will be available on the Committee’s website ( on the day of publication.


Committee Membership is as follows: Dr Sarah Wollaston (Con) (Totnes) (Chair), Rt Hon Ben Bradshaw (Lab) (Exeter), Julie Cooper (Lab) (Burnley), Dr James Davies (Con) (Vale of Clwyd), Andrea Jenkyns (Con) (Morley and Outwood), Andrew Percy (Con) (Brigg and Goole), Emma Reynolds (Lab) (Wolverhampton North East), Paula Sherriff (Lab) (Dewsbury), Maggie Throup (Con) (Erewash), Helen Whately (Con) (Faversham and Mid Kent), and Dr Philippa Whitford (SNP) (Central Ayrshire)

Media Enquiries: Alex Paterson, Media Officer, Tel: 020 7219 1589

Specific Committee Information: e-mail:

Committee Website:

Watch committees and parliamentary debates online:

Petitions Committee – Petition debate on sugary drinks tax

Wed, 25 November 2015 | Commons Select Committee Press Release

25 November 2015

On Monday 30 November the House of Commons will debate an e-petition calling for “a tax on sugary drinks in the UK to improve our children’s health.” The debate was scheduled by the Petitions Committee following a petition started on by Jamie Oliver and Sustain.

* Watch the debate on Parliament TV

* Petition and Government response: Introduce a tax on sugary drinks in the UK to improve our children’s health

* Health Committee inquiry: childhood obesity

* Petitions Committee

The debate, led by Helen Jones MP, Chair of the Petitions Committee, will start at 4.30pm on Monday 30 November in Westminster Hall. The debate is on the motion: “That this House has considered e-petition 106651 relating to a tax on sugary drinks.”

The petition was started by Jamie Oliver and Sustain and has now been signed by over 151,000 people. The Petitions Committee referred the petition to the Health Committee, which took evidence from the petitioners as part of its inquiry into childhood obesity.

The Petitions Committee has decided to schedule a debate on the petition to coincide with the publication of a report from the Health Committee. The Health Committee will make recommendations about what the Government’s policy priorities should be for addressing childhood obesity. MPs will be able to discuss the petition and the Health Committee’s report in the debate.

The Health Committee will be tweeting ‘infographic teasers’ in the lead up to its report publication. You can follow the Health Committee on Twitter: @commonshealth

What will the e-petition debate achieve?

Debates on e-petitions in Westminster Hall are general debates about the issues raised by the e-petition. MPs can discuss the petition and, if they wish, ask questions about the Government’s position on the issue or press the Government to take action. A Government Minister takes part in the debate and answers the points raised. These debates help to raise the profile of a campaign and could influence decision-making in Government and Parliament.

E-petition debates in Westminster Hall cannot directly change the law or result in a vote to implement the request of the petition. Creating new laws, or changing existing ones, can only be done through the parliamentary legislative process which involves a number of debates, and detailed consideration of the law in draft, in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. This process is normally started by the Government, although there are some ways in which individual MPs or members of the House of Lords who are not in the Government (known as “backbenchers”) can ask Parliament to consider new laws.

The Government will respond to the recommendations made in the Health Committee’s report. This will normally be within two months of the report’s publication date.

The Petitions Committee

The Petitions Committee was set up in July 2015 to consider all petitions started on as well as the traditional public (paper) petitions presented by MPs.

It has the power to schedule debates on e-petitions in the House of Commons Second Chamber, Westminster Hall. It considers all petitions which receive over 100,000 signatures for debate. In deciding which petitions should be debated, it takes into account how many people have signed the petition, the topicality of the issue raised, and whether the issue has recently been debated in Parliament.

As well as scheduling debates on petitions, the Committee can also conduct inquiries of its own. The Committee works closely with other House of Commons Select Committees to help connect petitioners with work

Watch the debate online

You can watch the e-petition debate live from 4.30pm on Monday 30 November on Parliament TV

After the debate, the video will be available permanently from this page. A transcript of the debate will also be available and appear on this page a couple of days afterwards.




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