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More than a quarter of HF admissions are for patients with diabetes

More than a quarter of admissions to hospital with heart failure (HF) involve a patient with diabetes (28%, or 198,200 of 717,100 admissions during 2010–2012), according to the latest National Diabetes Audit1 released by the Health & Social Care Information Centre.

The audit recorded over two million patients with diabetes and shows people with diabetes have a 73% greater risk of being admitted to hospital for HF compared to the rest of the population. It also shows that patients with diabetes who were admitted to hospital for HF had more than quadruple the odds of dying in the following year.

The audit examined health complications associated with the highest risks of death in patients with diabetes and measured death rates from all causes among people with diabetes, compared to the general population. Across England and Wales patients with diabetes were 38% more likely to die prematurely; the audit estimates there were 24,900 more deaths in 2012 than expected.

The audit is the largest of its kind in the world and presents 2010–2012 findings on deaths, complications and hospital admissions among over 2 million people with diabetes in England and Wales. The audit is managed by the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) in partnership with Diabetes UK and is commissioned by the Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership (HQIP).

Key findings from the audit show:

  • Of the 198,100 people in the audit with type 1 diabetes in England and Wales in 2012, 3,300 died during the year, whereas 1,440 would have been expected among the same number of the general population, giving a 129% increased risk of death for people with this form of diabetes
  • Of the 1.9 million people in the audit with type 2 diabetes in England and Wales in 2012, 70,900 died during the year, whereas 52,800 would have been expected among the same number of the general population, giving a 34% increased risk of death for people with this form of diabetes
  • The risk of premature death for people with diabetes compared to their peers in the general population (relative risk) is greatest for women and younger people
  • The inflated death rate for people with diabetes in 2012 (38%) is lower than observed in 2011 (41%) however it is too soon to know whether this is a trend.

Dr Bob Young, clinical lead for the audit, said: “This audit is a wake-up call. HF is preventable and treatable. Every health professional should take note of how much more common heart failure is among patients with diabetes and how high the short term risk of death is.”

References

1. National Diabetes Audit – 2011-12. Healthcare Quality Improvement Partnership 2013. Available from http://www.hscic.gov.uk/catalogue/PUB12421

Published on: December 20, 2013

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