Warwickshire people at high risk of diabetes urged to take control of their health

Every year, Type 2 diabetes causes 20,000 early deaths. It is a leading cause of preventable sight loss in people of working age, and other complications include kidney failure, heart attack, stroke and lower limb amputation.

To mark Diabetes Week, which began today, Monday 11 June, Warwickshire County Council is encouraging people who are at high risk of developing diabetes to start making lifestyle changes to reduce the chances of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Around 60% of cases of Type 2 diabetes can be delayed or prevented by making lifestyle changes. You can reduce your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes by having a balanced diet, keeping active and losing weight if you are overweight.

Warwickshire County Council, Coventry City Council and local NHS organisations have partnered with ICS Health and Wellbeing to develop a new programme to help people who are at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The new Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme is now available across Coventry and Warwickshire.

The free programme will help people take charge of their health and wellbeing, make healthier lifestyle choices and reduce their risk of developing the disease as a result.

Patients will be referred by their GP or nurse, or an NHS Health Check professional. After completing an initial one-to-one assessment, they will attend regular group sessions with a trained health and wellbeing coach. The sessions will be held across Coventry and Warwickshire, including at evenings and weekends. The coach will advise the groups on healthy eating, help them to take more physical exercise and support them to maintain their lifestyle changes in the long term.

Cllr Les Caborn, Portfolio Holder for Health and Wellbeing, said: “Across Coventry and Warwickshire, around 8,000 people have been identified by health services as being at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, a serious, lifelong condition.

“However, making sustainable changes to your lifestyle can dramatically decrease your chances of developing diabetes if you are at risk, and I sincerely encourage anyone whose GP refers them to the prevention programme to sign up and take control of their own health.”

Diabetes prevention is a key priority of the Better Health, Better Care, Better Value programme, which aims to prevent illness and enable people in Coventry and Warwickshire to take greater control of their health so that they stay well for longer.

All NHS organisations in Coventry and Warwickshire, plus Coventry City Council and Warwickshire County Council, are partners in the programme, working together to support local communities to live well, stay independent and enjoy life.

To find out more about the Healthier You: NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme, visit https://preventing-diabetes.co.uk/coventry-warwickshire/ For more information about a free NHS Health Check for people aged 40-74, visit www.nhs.uk/conditions/nhs-health-check/