This resource has been designed for all Health Professionals who need to administer insulin for patients with diabetes.
By August 31st 2012, all adults aged 18 or over using insulin therapy should be offered an insulin passport and patient information leaflet outlining potential safety issues relating to the prescribing, dispensing and administration of insulin by health care professionals.
Between November 2003 and November 2009, over 16,000 incidents involving insulin were reported to the National Patient Safety Agency (NPSA), resulting in several deaths and serious harm. An alert was issued in 2010 recommending all Healthcare Professionals (HCPs) involved in prescribing/dispensing or giving insulin should complete the "NHS Diabetes e-learning package" on Safe Use of Insulin. See registering for E- learning
In 2011, the NPSA published another alert, requiring that all adults aged 18 or over using insulin therapy should be given a patient information booklet explaining that mistakes can be made in the prescribing, dispensing and giving of their insulin. Patients should check they are being given the correct insulin, especially as some insulins have similar names but very different action profiles. They should also carry an "insulin passport" with them at all times, to show HCPs which insulin and device they are using.
The NPSA has produced a patient information booklet and insulin passport.
A shorter version of the booklet was devloped in Leicester in collaboration with the NPSA, consultant nurses and specialists in diabetes and is available
Insulin safety cards are available, from the respresentatives which have been agreed by the NPSA as suitable alternatives to the passport. Click here for more details
It is the responsibility of the prescriber to give out the passport/insulin safety card and the patient information leaflet. This includes when initiating insulin and giving repeat prescriptions.