Most people would be shocked to know that around 22,000 people with diabetes die early every year. Type 2 diabetes is a leading cause of preventable sight loss in people of working age and is a major contributor to kidney failure, heart attack, and stroke.
There are currently 3.4 million people with Type 2 diabetes in England with around 200,000 new diagnoses every year. While Type 1 diabetes cannot be prevented and is not linked to lifestyle, Type 2 diabetes is largely preventable through lifestyle changes.
One in six of all people in hospital have diabetes – while diabetes is often not the reason for admission, they often need a longer stay in hospital, are more likely to be re admitted and their risk of dying is higher.
As well as the human cost, Type 2 diabetes treatment accounts for just under nine per cent of the annual NHS budget. This is around £8.8 billion a year.
There are currently five million people in England at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. If these trends persist, one in three people will be obese by 2034 and one in 10 will develop Type 2 diabetes.
There is strong international evidence which demonstrates how behavioural interventions, which support people to maintain a healthy weight and be more active, can significantly reduce the risk of developing the condition.
The NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme is designed to help stop those at risk progressing to type 2 diabetes. The programme provides individualised support to participants to make lasting lifestyle changes. The programme is being rolled out across England. For further information, please visit the website.