One in 13 people across Lincolnshire has Type 2 diabetes, new figures have revealed and the county’s health services are facing a ‘time bomb’ if not addressed.
Latest statistics compiled by NHS Digital show the number of people in the area with the condition rose from 38,686 in March 2011 to 48,413 in March 2016 which is an increase of 25.1 per cent in five years.
During the past 12 months, figures show that 2,458 people have been diagnosed – an increase of 5.3 per cent.
That means 7.59 per cent of the county population has diabetes. The vast majority of people (90 per cent) have Type 2 diabetes which is linked to lifestyle.
Chief Clinical Officer Dr Sunil Hindocha from the Lincolnshire West Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), said: “The NHS is struggling to cope with the demands of managing diabetes and its complications.
“That is why we are focusing on identifying patients at high risk of diabetes and offering them education about the dangers of Type 2 diabetes and how it can be prevented.”
The figures have been released for Diabetes Prevention Week, organised by the East Midlands Cardiovascular Clinical Network, which started on Monday.
It has been developed to raise awareness of Type 2 diabetes and increase referral numbers onto the Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme, which is being rolled out nationally.
Type 2 diabetes is one of the UK’s biggest health challenges – there are currently 4.5 million people in the UK who have diabetes, mainly Type 2, but that could rise to five million if the problem is not tackled, Public Health England recently said.
However, it is hoped the national Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme will help reduce future numbers.
Since it started in Lincolnshire in July 2016 more than 1,700 people have been referred onto the educational programme where participants receive tailored support to help them make positive changes to their diet, weight and the amount of physical activity they do to significantly reduce the risk of, or even stop them from developing Type 2 diabetes.
Martin Cassidy, Quality Improvement Manager at East Midlands Cardiovascular Clinical Network and lead coordinator for the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme in the East Midlands, said: “The fact that Type 2 figures have increased in Lincolnshire comes as no surprise as we already know the condition has become a major and worrying health concern.
“The Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme, which is gradually being rolled out across the country, has been implemented to help those who are at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.
“It is essential we start to tackle the diabetes ticking time bomb before it’s too late. The NHS is already struggling to cope with treating the condition and the complications it can create if not managed correctly.”