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'Healthy lives, brighter futures' - Government strategy for young people's health

The Government has lauched its long-awaited strategy for children and young people's health.

Called 'Healthy lives, brighter futures', it is a joint strategy between the Department of Health and the Department for Children, Schools and Families.

We at Diabetes UK are very pleased to note that the Government has been listening to us.

Diabetes UK influencing Government

In our report 'Making all children matter', examining the problem with obtaining school support for children with diabetes, we recommended that the forthcoming strategy on child health address the issues, and spell out how it will ensure implementation of relevant legislation and guidance among schools, local authorities and primary care trusts (PCTs).

Recognising variation in support

Thankfully the strategy does acknowledge the problems:

"We know there is variability across local areas in how well children with long-term conditions are supported in school.

"While in some cases parents report total satisfaction, others report a failure of health and education services to work together effectively to support the needs of individual children."

Steps to ensure guidance is acted upon

And therefore we are delighted that the government will be taking some necessary steps to help ensure implementation of guidance:

"We will update and reissue our guidance on Managing Medicines in Schools and support this with a new awareness-raising campaign.

"This will include guidance relating to children with complex health needs as well as clear statements of expectations of different partners, including schools and PCTs. We will develop this guidance in consultation with expert organisations such as Diabetes UK."

A move in the right direction

While this may not fully solve the challenges parents face, it is at least a good step in the right direction and we look forward to working with the Government to make improvements for every child with diabetes or other health conditions.

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