Last updated: 18.07.09

Virtual Colleges online training set to improve end of life care for patients with diabetes

75,000 people with diabetes die each year in England, accounting for approximately one in seven of all deaths. In recognition of this, Virtual College and NHS England have created a new online training course for healthcare professionals who provide ‘end of life care’ for people with diabetes.

By undertaking ‘The Safe Management of Diabetes during End of Life Care’ course, healthcare professionals will increase their understanding of the management of diabetes, helping patients to live as well as possible during this time.

Learners will look at the impact diabetes has on end of life patient experience and consider how insulin and non-insulin therapies, together with safe medicines management can improve the patient experience. Multiple issues surrounding “end of life care”, when “end of life” care should be considered and NICE quality standards for “end of life” care are also included.

An explanation on the management of diabetes during intercurrent illness is given, plus details on treatment withdrawal and when it is appropriate to give glucocorticoids.

The content of the course has been independently certified as conforming to universally accepted Continuous Professional Development (CPD) guidelines and takes approximately 45 minutes to an hour to complete depending on the speed of the learner.

The course is available as part of the subscription based National Patient Safety Training Suite which is already utilised by over 70 healthcare provider organisations, or can be purchased as an individual course.

The National Patient Safety Suite comprise of six online training modules, developed in partnership with NHS England; 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, The National Curriculum for the Training of Healthcare Professionals Who Care for Children and Young People with Diabetes Mellitus Level 1 and the Safe Use of Insulin.

The addition of ‘The Safe Management of Diabetes during End of Life Care’ will take the total number of courses in the National Patient Safety Suite to seven. A further six patient safety courses are due for release throughout the course of the year, taking the total number of courses within the suite to 13.

Subscription to the suite is based on 12 months unlimited training access for all staff, to all of the available courses. Different options are available for individuals, small, medium and large organisations.

For more information call John Thornton: 01943 885086 or email

For course details visit