The Midlands is the region with the highest prevalence of diabetes in England, according to the latest figures released by NHS Digital.
In 2018/19, the Midlands recorded 7.6% of people on the NHS register as having diabetes. This figure is higher than the previous year’s figures (2017/18), which was a diabetes prevalence of 7.5%.
The region with the second highest prevalence is the North East and Yorkshire with 7.3% and the North West is third-placed with a prevalence of 7.2%. The lowest prevalence is found in South East with 6.2%.
The diabetes figures include type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes and other less common forms of diabetes mellitus.
At STP level, the Black Country and Birmingham represent two major hotspots for diabetes across England. STP stands for sustainability and transformation plans, which are ‘place-based plans’ that correspond to specific areas. 42 STPs within England are included in the figures.
In 2018/19, 8.8% of adults registered in the Black Country STP have diabetes. The second-placed STP, Birmingham and Solihull, is right next-door and has a prevalence of 8.4%. These are the only STPs with prevalence figures above 8%.
The STP with lowest prevalence of diabetes is Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire West with a prevalence of 5.4%. This is the only STP with a prevalence below 5.5%.
The most common form of diabetes, type 2 diabetes, is often associated with greater rates of diabetes. The figures show that the regional correlation between obesity and type 2 diabetes is not so straight-forward.
For example, Coventry and Warwickshire STP has an obesity prevalence of 9.32%, which is higher than the obesity prevalence of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland STP, which has an obesity prevalence of 9.28%.
However, when it comes to the diabetes prevalence figures, Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland has a diabetes prevalence of 7.78%, which is significantly higher than Coventry and Warwickshire’s which is 6.63%.
Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland comes in at number 4 for the highest prevalence of diabetes by STP, whereas Coventry and Warwickshire comes in much lower down at number 29 of the 42 STPs.
The complete list of figures, which cover much more than just diabetes and obesity, can be found as part of the publication titled, ‘Quality and Outcomes Framework, Achievement, prevalence and exceptions data 2018-19 [PAS]’.