Marlyn Glen MSP

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Scottish Labour MSP for North East Scotland

MSP re-tables question on diabetes in Dundee and Angus because of “lack of information” in answer.

9 June 2010
Marlyn Glen is re-tabling a question to the Scottish Government in the Scottish Parliament on the number of people in Dundee and Angus admitted to hospital for diabetes because of “a lack of information that was made available in the past”.
Ms. Glen is attempting to assist in raising public awareness of the extent of diabetes locally, and had tabled a question asking for details of the number of admissions to hospital for diabetes in Dundee and Angus in each of the past four years to see if there was a trend in the figures
The answer she received indicated that the numbers ranged from 141 to 174 a year in Dundee, and from 101 to 138 a year in Angus.
These figures related to instances where diabetes was a primary diagnosis, and the Scottish Government would not provide the information by area ( ” intermediate geography zone”) ” due to the small numbers and the associated risk of disclosure of information on individual patients.”
However, Ms. Glen said that when she asked the Scottish Government the same question in September 2007,the Scottish Government said there were 2,073 acute hospital admissions for diabetes in Dundee in 2005-06 and 1,264 in Angus.
This was because cases where diabetes was either a primary or a secondary diagnosis were included in the answer.
In the most recent answer the Scottish Government has restricted the numbers to only those with a primary diagnosis of diabetes.
In addition, information was given on the number of cases in 31 areas of Dundee and 25 areas of Angus ( “intermediate geographical zones” )
Ms. Glen said that hospital admissions were just one source of diagnosis of the condition.
She said,
“The fullest possible information that is consistent with patient confidentiality should be made available to raise public awareness of the condition, given its particular relationship with obesity.
” It may be that the levels of confidentiality have been raised or classifications changed since last I raised this question.
“However, the trend in data availability is towards the local level with the benefits that can come from developing health policy at local level.”
Ms. Glen is to ask the Scottish Government for the same information for Dundee and Angus for acute admissions where diabetes is either a primary or a secondary diagnosis.

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