The NHS type 2 diabetes prevention scheme helps thousands of people

The NHS type 2 diabetes prevention scheme helps thousands of people
© shutterstock/Jacob Lund

A new scheme has aided type 2 diabetes prevention, helping thousands of people avoid the condition through added support and care.

Type 2 diabetes is a common condition causing high levels of glucose in the blood. It causes symptoms like excessive thirst, and tiredness and can lead to serious problems with the eyes, heart and nerves. The NHS recommends exercising and eating healthy to support type 2 diabetes prevention.

A new analysis by the University of Manchester reveals the risk of developing type 2 diabetes was one-fifth lower in people with raised blood sugars referred to the programme compared to people not receiving NHS support.

Prioritising type 2 diabetes prevention in England

The new scheme called NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme has been offered to adults in England who are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes as part of radical action to tackle obesity rates and to prioritise type 2 diabetes prevention.

The latest data indicates that over 1.2 million people have been offered support through the programme, with personalised lifestyle changes including better quality nutrition, weight loss and increased physical activity.

Professor Evangelos Kontopantelis from The University of Manchester said: “Type 2 diabetes is a major public health concern which has been rising globally, with over 3 million people in the UK currently diagnosed with it.

“Previous studies have shown that both lifestyle modifications through diet and physical activity and medication can prevent progression to this condition.

”This study is good news for the Healthier You Diabetes Prevention Programme, which we show beyond doubt is a powerful way to protect your health.”

7% reduction in type 2 diabetes revealed

The new analysis by Manchester researchers found that the type 2 diabetes prevention scheme resulted in a 7% reduction in the number of new diagnoses in England between 2018 and 2019, with around 18,000 people saved from the consequences of the condition.

NHS national clinical director for diabetes and obesity, Professor Jonathan Valabhji, said: “This important study is further evidence that the NHS is preventing type 2 diabetes and helping hundreds of thousands of people across England to lead healthier lives.

“Type 2 diabetes is a growing problem with millions of people affected, and not only is it linked to kidney failure, amputation, heart attack, stroke and many of the common types of cancer, it also adds pressure to NHS services.

“So doing nothing is not an option for the NHS, and so it is fantastic that our world-first programme has offered well over one million people support and empowered them to lead healthier lives and prevent type 2 diabetes.

“You can easily check your own risk through the Diabetes UK ‘Know Your Risk’ tool and come forward for support.”


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