Diabetes rate highest in Birmingham

Thu, 15 Aug 2013
New figures show that Birmingham has the highest rate of diabetes in the country, with nearly one in 10 people in some parts of the UK's second largest city living with disease.

In areas such as Walsall, 8.1% of residents are diagnosed with diabetes, rising to 9.3% in Balsall Heath and Bordesley Green.

The statistics from the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) also reveal that Birmingham has one of the fastest growing rates of the disease, and that £350 is spent on prescription medication by the average diabetes patient each year - the third highest figure in the country.

"Many people still think of diabetes as a relatively mild condition that can be easily managed. They don't realise it can lead to devastating complications such as blindness, amputation and stroke," Coun Steve Bedser, Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing at Birmingham City Council, said.

"But, while diabetes can be an extremely life-limiting condition, you can dramatically reduce your risk of developing the most common form (type 2) by making positive changes to your lifestyle."

"Maintaining a healthy weight through a healthy, balanced diet and exercising regularly are ways of preventing type 2 diabetes and managing the condition. That's where initiatives like our hugely successful Be Active scheme can make a difference."
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