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The European Diabetes Working Party for Older People (EDWPOP) was established in December 2000 to ensure that older people in societies across the European Union have consistent and high-quality diabetes care throughout their lives. It developed from the Elderly Diabetes Working Group (Chair: Professor A J Sinclair, UK) of the St Vincent Declaration Primary Care Diabetes Group chaired by Dr Paul Cromme (Netherlands).

It was appreciated that modern diabetes care systems for older people require integrated care between general practitioners, hospital specialists, and other members of the healthcare team. However, what was not appreciated fully enough was that these should have a multi-dimensional approach with an emphasis on prevention of diabetes and its complications, early intervention for vascular disease, and assessment of disability due to limb problems, eye disease, stroke, and other causes. Management of diabetes in older people can be relatively straightforward especially when patients have no other co-morbidities and when vascular complications are absent. In many cases, however, special issues arise which increase the complexity of management such as the development of frailty and this can lead to difficult clinical decision-making.

Variations in clinical practice are common in most healthcare systems resulting in inequalities of care. For older people with diabetes, this may be manifest as lack of access to services, inadequate specialist provision, poorer clinical outcomes and patient and family dissatisfaction. The response of the EDWPOP to these types of concern was originally to develop several sets of clinical guidelines which are accessible here.

Vision

Through high quality international collaborative work, to create a better quality of life and future for all older people with diabetes.

Mission

To provide evidenced-based clinical guidelines, consensus statements and management strategies for older people with diabetes which lead to high quality diabetes care.