New cases of diabetes are soaring in the city of Coventry, with new figures showing that more than 350 people have developed the disease in the last 12 months.
The alarming figures from Diabetes UK show that a total of 20,214 Coventry residents (or 7.8% of the local population) are believed to have diabetes compared to 19,857 a year ago, with the vast majority suffering from the obesity-related type 2 diabetes.
And according to the charity group, these figures will continue to rise over the coming years – surpassing 23,000 by 2020 – unless tackling type 2 diabetes is made a top health priority for the city.
Commenting on the statistics, Pete Shorrick, Diabetes UK’s regional manager for the Midlands, said: “It is alarming that the number of people with diabetes in Coventry has gone up by 357 in a single year, and addressing this situation needs to be one of the top health priorities in the area.
“Given that the increase in diabetes cases is mainly due to a sharp rise in Type 2 diabetes, we need to get much better at preventing cases of Type 2.
“A vital first step towards this is to ensure both that people realise how serious it is and also that they understand their own personal risk so that if they are at high risk they can make the lifestyle changes that can help prevent it.
“This is why we need to raise awareness that if people are over 40, overweight, have a large waist, or have a family history of diabetes, they need to get a risk assessment, as should people from who are South Asian and aged over 25.”
Being aware of the risk factors, symptoms and complications of type 2 diabetes is vital, and anyone who thinks they are showing signs of the illness should visit their local pharmacy or GP surgery to get themselves checked. Risk assessment is also available online at riskscore.diabetes.org.uk/type2risk.

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