New report shows 499,000 people at high risk of type 2 diabetes in Yorkshire and The Humber

New figures from PHE estimate that around 499,000 people across Yorkshire and The Humber have blood sugar levels that put them at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes.


The report, compiled by PHE’s National Cardiovascular Health Intelligence Network (NCVIN), provides the most accurate and robust estimate of how many people over 16  have blood sugar levels in a range indicating a high risk of developing type 2 diabetes, otherwise known as non-diabetic hyperglycaemia.

It was commissioned by the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme (NHS DPP), which will support people in reducing their risk of developing type 2 diabetes by helping them lose weight, be more active and have a healthier diet. The new estimate underlines the need to act on type 2 diabetes, especially as it already results in 22,000 early deaths and costs the NHS £8.8billion every year.

An evidence review also published today by PHE shows programmes similar to the NHS DPP can be successful in preventing 26% of people at high risk of type 2 diabetes from going on to develop the condition. People supported by diabetes prevention programmes lose on average 1.57kg more weight than those not on a programme aiming to significantly reduce diabetes risk.

Both reports have shaped what the NHS DPP will offer – at least 9 months of information, support, group and one to one sessions on weight loss, physical activity and diet. Practitioners, clinicians, academics and the public are currently being consulted on a proposed outline of the programme. Consultation responses will further inform the programme, with a phased national rollout starting in 2016.

Bradford City Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) is one of seven demonstrator sites across the country that are helping to shape the programme. Since 2013, more than 12,000 people who are at risk of developing diabetes have taken part in the ‘Bradford Beating Diabetes’ programme. Being a demonstrator has allowed the work to expand to Bradford Districts CCG, which means all patients in Bradford will have access to the programme.

People found to be at high risk are offered a 12 month intensive lifestyle change programme (ILCP). These are delivered by trained BBD Champions, recruited from the community.  An ILCP consists of nine group sessions over a year and supports people to make healthy lifestyle choices including advice on activity, healthy eating, stopping smoking, the risk of not making changes and personal goal setting.

Dr Andrew Lee, diabetes lead at PHE Yorkshire and the Humber, said:

‘We know how to lower the risk of developing type 2 diabetes: lose weight, exercise and eat healthily, but it’s hard to do it alone. PHE’s evidence review shows that supporting people along the way will help them protect their health and that’s what our prevention programme will do.’

Paul Twomey, Medical Director, NHS England (Yorkshire and the Humber) said:

There are too many people on the cusp of developing Type 2 diabetes and we can change that. The growing body of evidence makes us confident that our NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme will reduce the numbers of those at risk going on to develop the debilitating disease.’

Dr Sohail Abbas, GP lead for Diabetes at Bradford City CCG, said:

‘We are seeing some excellent results – and this is down to local GPs and the ILCP groups working with patients to help them make changes that can keep them healthy, whether they already have diabetes or are at risk of developing it.’

Barbara Young, Chief Executive of Diabetes UK, said:

“Having high blood glucose levels significantly increases your risk of developing type 2 diabetes, which is a serious health condition which affects 2.9 million people in England, and can lead to devastating complications such as blindness, amputations and stroke, and ultimately early death. This is why it is really important that people at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes are given evidenced based support to reduce their risk. As well as helping to reduce the human cost of type 2 diabetes, this would also go a long way to helping to reduce costs to the NHS. The NHS spends 10 per cent of its entire budget managing diabetes and unless we get better at preventing type 2 diabetes this figure will rise to unsustainable levels.”

Higher rates are found in areas with large ethnic minority populations or older populations, or both – the groups traditionally at higher risk of type 2 diabetes. Lifestyle factors, including weight, physical activity levels and diet, are important in determining the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The NHS DPP will focus on providing support to participants on changing their behaviour in these areas to reduce their risk.

Aside from the reducing incidence of type 2 diabetes, the NHS DPP also aims to reduce the life-changing complications associated with the disease, like heart, stroke, kidney, eye and foot problems, and reduce costs to the NHS in the long term.

People identified with a high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, either through an NHS Health Check or through an existing blood test result will be offered a place on the NHS DPP. The NHS DPP launches in 2016.

For local examples of work to prevent type 2 diabetes please contact Diane Bell.

Public Health England Yorkshire and The Humber Press Office

Issued by Diane Bell

Email: diane.bell@phe.gov.uk

Tel: 0113 855 7341 or 07789 653402