Improving services and outcomes for people living with diabetes locally is an important priority for West Norfolk Clinical Commissioning Group.
West Norfolk has a high prevalence of diabetes, which is related to a range of factors. Our genetic risk and getting older are important risk factor for type 2 diabetes but so too are other common factors, such as the lifestyle choices we make, our diets and physical inactivity, which increase the risk of obesity.
As a GP in Downham Market, I see the impact that a complicated condition like diabetes can have on personal health and wellbeing.
That is one of the reasons why we are working closely with our partners to provide services and support to help people living with diabetes manage their condition, along with helping others to reduce their risk of developing it.
The CCG is also raising awareness of diabetes and promoting the benefits of living a healthier lifestyle to help support individuals and their families.
Dr Clare Hambling
West Norfolk CCG Governing Body Member
Diabetes UK Clinical Champion
Diabetes: the basics
There are a number of different types of diabetes but the two most common are type 1 and type 2 diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes occurs when the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas are destroyed and people who live with type 1 diabetes must have daily injections or infusions of insulin to survive.
Type 2 diabetes is caused when the body does not make enough insulin or does not use it properly. It can often be managed by changes to diet and lifestyle or with tablets, although some people will require insulin or other injectable therapies.
If not properly managed, diabetes can lead to heart attacks, strokes or other serious complications.
Help reduce your type 2 risk
The National Diabetes Prevention Programme (NDPP) is a tailored 9-month healthy nutrition and exercise support programme that aims to delay or prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes in people who have been identified as being at increased risk of diabetes. Throughout the programme, there are 13 sessions that include dietary advice, light/moderate exercise sessions, and healthy lifestyle guidance.
Commissioned by NHS England, the NDPP's long term aims are to:-
- Reduce the future growth in incidence of Type 2 diabetes
- Reduce the incidence of complications associated with Type 2 diabetes
- Reduce health inequalities associated with incidence of Type 2 diabetes
There are currently 5 million people in England who are identified as being at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes and, if current trends persist, one in three people will be obese by 2034. There is strong international evidence to demonstrate how behavioural interventions, which support people to maintain a healthy weight and be more active, can significantly reduce the risk of developing the condition.
Each year in the United Kingdom, 24,000 people with diabetes die early. Type 2 diabetes is a major contributor to high blood pressure, kidney failure, and vascular diseases including heart attacks, stroke, and peripheral arterial disease. Moreover, diabetes may increase your risk of infections, heart disease, loss of consciousness, and developing musculoskeletal disorders.
Find out if you are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes by taking Diabetes UK Know Your Risk tool.
Healthy Living directory
A healthy, active lifestyle can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Our Directory of Healthy Living Services in Norfolk & Waveney has information on exercise, healthy eating, and weight-management services, and educational programmes and self-help apps.
KLIFF empowering people with diabetes
King’s Lynn Insulin For Food (KLIFF) is a course which has been designed to support people with diabetes who require insulin and would like to learn more about how to manage their diabetes and how to help it fit in with their life.
The course has been designed to help empower people who require multiple daily insulin injections and will help them learn how to adjust their insulin at meal times so they can eat and exercise as they wish.
Along with dispelling some of the myths surrounding food, KLIFF looks at carbohydrate counting, insulin injection techniques and how to bring blood sugar levels back to safe readings.
Information to support people living with type 2 diabetes
People with type 2 diabetes are invited to attend information sessions run by Norfolk Community Health & Care.
The three-and-a-half hour session includes an outline of diabetes, its complications and how to manage it along with looking at the importance of checking feet. Dietary intake and portion sizes are also explained.
If you are interested in attending or would like more information please contact the team on 01553 668682 or email diabeteseducation [at] nchc.nhs.uk
Find out more
For more information on diabetes please go to:
- Diabetes UK - www.diabetes.org.uk/
- NHS England type 1 diabetes guide - www.nhs.uk/conditions/type-1-diabetes/
- NHS England type 2 diabetes guides - https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/type-2-diabetes/food-and-keeping-active/