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Frome fights diabetes health threat

Patients at risk of developing Type II diabetes could be amongst the first to benefit from new smartphone technology aimed at improving diet and lifestyle. 

Doctors, nurses and health advisors at Frome Medical Practice, Beckington and Mendip Country practice will be highlighting the benefits of their new free digital diabetes pilot scheme to patients identified as being at risk as part of this month’s National Diabetes Prevention Week. (16 – 24 April)

There are over 30,000 people in Somerset currently living with diabetes. Around 90 per cent of them have Type 2 diabetes. The risk of developing the disease can be reduced by simply maintaining a heathy weight, eating a balanced diet and keeping physically active.

Dr Helen Kingston, Senior Partner with Frome Medical Centre, explained:  “The incidence of Type II diabetes is rising fast and largely associated with our unhealthy lifestyles and poor diet.  Frome Medical Practice, along with Beckington and Mendip Country Practice are currently piloting two digital diabetes prevention schemes aimed at helping patients who have not yet got the disease but could be at risk.

“During Diabetes Prevention Week we will be inviting these patients to join the pilot schemes so they can be part of this exciting new way to help prevent the disease. Places on the scheme are limited and will be allocated on a first come first serve basis.”

Patients can contact their practice for more details.  Further details are also available on Frome Medical Practice website – www. frome medicalpractice.co.uk/services-clinics/digital-diabetes-prevention-programme/

A face to face prevention programme will also be launched later this year. New digital support programmes will also be available for those diagnosed with diabetes.

The complications associated with untreated or poorly managed diabetes include sight loss, kidney failure, heart attack, and stroke and even the amputations. The cost of providing prescription medicines to those with Type II diabetes in Somerset alone is already over £8.4 million a year, with an extra £6 million being spent on treating people with complications of the disease in hospital.

If you want to know more about your risk of developing Type II diabetes then go to the Diabetes UK’s website and complete their online survey. (https://riskscore.    diabetes.org.uk/start) or visit the NHS Choices website for information about ways to reducing your risk of developing Type II diabetes – www.nhs.uk/diabetes

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