North MSP David Stewart has been selected by the International Diabetes Federation to represent Scotland at the Parliamentary Champions for Diabetes conference in Canada at the end of the month. David Stewart, who chairs the Scottish Parliament’s Cross Party Group on diabetes said he was greatly honoured to speak at the conference in front of over 100 Parliamentarians from across the globe.
“There are over 280 thousand people in Scotland with diabetes. Another 500 thousand are at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and that number is rising every year. 1 million people are at increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes as a result of their waist circumference or being overweight. That is one in five adults in Scotland” said David Stewart the Scottish Parliamentary Diabetes Champion who has been returned to this role which he has held for the last two years, by the International Diabetes Federation.
“If we are going to reverse these trends, and stop the sharp rise in Type 2 diabetes, we need to support all parts of the population to make healthier choices. Individuals are often working hard to achieve a healthy weight. The Scottish Government, NHS Scotland, local authorities, employers, and the food and drink industry need to match that determination.”
“With this in mind we need to do more to make sure that people get the right treatment that reflects their needs and lifestyles as early as possible,” stated David Stewart.
He continued “ Diabetes is a condition which is strongly linked to inequalities. Inequalities between people living in areas of multi deprivation and those with access to healthier lifestyles, and inequalities between people living with Type 1 and Type 2. In Scotland people with Type 1 regularly receive fewer checks than people with Type 2 diabetes. A person should receive the same standard of care no matter their age or where they come from or what type of diabetes they have.”
“Scotland is pioneering in the UK a dedicated Type 1 service, incorporating childhood and adolescent and adult services that will see people living with Type 1 diabetes given a focus and a service that works to their needs.”
“The HbA1c test is absolutely essential in that it gives the most accurate indication of how well diabetes is being managed and whether or not there is an increased risk of developing complications.”
“The Scottish Government pledged that a quarter of young Scot with type 1 diabetes must have access to insulin pumps by March 2013, and by March 2015, the number of insulin pumps available to people of all ages with type 1 diabetes in Scotland would be more than 2000.
The benefits of Insulin pumps are absolutely clear. They empower users to have greater control over their condition as it gives them a more flexible and reliable means of managing their glycaemic levels.”
As highlighted, on Friday 27 November 2015, David Stewart flies to Vancouver to take part in the World Diabetes Congress. Experts in diabetes care from around the world will exchange diabetes research and best practices. Physicians, scientists, nurses, educators and other healthcare professionals, as well as government officials, policy makers and representatives from 230 IDF Member Associations will gather to learn, discover and connect.
“The cutting-edge scientific programme will be made up of 220 hours of sessions split into 6 streams. With talks from around 350 speakers and over 1000 posters being presented.80 global exhibitors will be presenting their latest research, products and medical advances. This event is the ideal place to connect and network with all the players in the field of diabetes medicine, care, management and advocacy”, said David Stewart.
Jane-Claire Judson, National Director at Diabetes Scotland, said: “David is a strong voice in the diabetes community and it’s great that he has once again been selected to represent Scotland at the International Diabetes Federation’s Parliamentary Champions for Diabetes. The conference provides a fantastic opportunity to share our knowledge and also learn from the experiences and innovative practices of other nations, which will help us better understand how we can deliver improved services for people living with diabetes in Scotland and those that care for them.”
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