May 2014 sees the addition of the latest course to the National Patient Safety Training Suite; the National Curriculum for the Training of Healthcare Professionals Who Care for Children and Young People with Diabetes Mellitus.
The course provides a foundation level of education to all healthcare professionals that care for children and young people with diabetes.
The National Patient Safety Training Suite is a collection of online courses developed by Virtual College in partnership with NHS England. There are six courses in the suite; The Safe Use of Insulin, The Safe Use of Intravenous Insulin Infusions, The Safe Management of Hypoglycaemia, The Safe Use of Non-Insulin Therapies for Diabetes, the Safe Use of Pen Devices and the new Paediatrics course.
A further seven safety training courses are currently in production and will be released during 2014, taking the total number of courses within the Patient Safety Training Suite to 13.
All courses within the National Patient Safety Training Suite can be accessed free of charge by staff employed by organisations that subscribe to the online training.
In 2010, the National Diabetes Inpatient Audit (NaDIA) highlighted the worrying scale of medication errors in inpatients in England, when it revealed a total of 37% of patients with diabetes had experienced at least one medication error and, in the space of four years, three fatalities had occurred.
As a result, all NHS organisations and the independent sector were required to have a training programme in place for all healthcare staff (including medical staff) expected to prescribe, administer or handle insulin.
Since 2010 more than 225,000 clinicians, carers and diabetes patients have completed one of the courses around the Safe Use of Insulin training, jointly funded by NHS Diabetes and Virtual College. Until March of this year structural changes to the NHS resulted in NHS Diabetes being subsumed into the new NHS England organisation resulting in cessation of funding.
Virtual College continue to support training through the newly formed National Patient Safety Training Suite, providing a part-funded model with NHS England. Virtual College and others will be investing in the ongoing development of new online courses.
Judith Clarkson, Director of Virtual College’s Health and Social Care division said: “We are delighted with the results Virtual College has jointly achieved with NHS Diabetes / NHS England.
There is clearly still a vast amount of enthusiasm and support within the NHS for the continuing National Patient Safety Suite and I am delighted it is providing a seamless transfer for NHS and other health organisations in continuing to treat patients with diabetes safely."