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Hypoglycaemia Study

Innovative hypoglycaemia pathway for admission avoidance: a partnership approach with a regional ambulance trust 

What we are doing:

The study is implementing and evaluating an enhanced care pathway for people with diabetes who require an ambulance call out to treat hypoglycaemia (low blood sugar level). The intervention consists of an information booklet aimed at raising awareness of hypoglycaemia followed by a phone call from a diabetes specialist nurse to discuss the causes and management of hypoglycaemia.

Why are we doing it:

Hypoglycaemia in people with diabetes is relatively common and can have significant health implications, as well as implications for driving which can affect employment. The care pathway being evaluated has been developed and implemented in Leicester City to provide support to people who experience hypoglycaemia and will be fully tested in two new sites.

What will the benefits be?

It is hoped that this intervention will be successful in preventing the number of repeat ambulance call outs for hypoglycaemia. The study will also assess whether factors such as fear of hypoglycaemia, quality of life and knowledge of DVLA driving regulations are improved by the pathway. Reducing the number of ambulance call outs for hypoglycaemia would result in significant cost saving to the NHS in addition to the patient benefits. The study will therefore collect data in order to establish the financial costs and benefit of the intervention.

Who we are working with:

The pathway will be implemented and evaluated in Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire. We are working with colleagues from:

  • East Midlands Ambulance Service
  • University of Lincoln
  • University of Leicester
  • East Midlands Academic Health Science Network
  • Health Education East Midlands
  • Lincolnshire Community Diabetes Services
  • Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  • MSN Ltd

Study leads:

Professor Kamlesh Khunti, Professor of Primary Care Diabetes & Vascular Medicine, University of Leicester, and Professor Niro Siriwardena, Professor of Primary and Pre-Hospital Health Care, University of Lincoln/Associate Clinical Director, East Midlands Ambulance Service.


Carol Akroyd