Cases of Diabetes Rise Sharply, Fueling Call to Action

diabetes riseThe United Kingdom has recently joined a growing number of countries whose statistical analyses on the occurrence of diabetes have spurred calls to action to prevent the sharp increases in the disease. According to information gathered by Diabetes UK from practitioners across the country, in 2013 there were 163,000 new diagnoses of the disease in the country, bringing the number of people with diabetes in the country to 3.2 million. Patients with diabetes must monitor their blood glucose levels with one of a variety of systems and proprietary diabetes accessories such as Contour test strips or test strips for Accu-chek Aviva. All patients with Type 1 diabetes and some patients with type 2 diabetes must also administer insulin with the help of products ranging from cheap insulin syringes to insulin pen needles or even insulin pumps. The disease, even when well-managed, can cause a number of health risks for patients.


Diabetes UK released the figures earlier this month, documenting the biggest annual increase in diabetes cases since 2008. The charity says that more needs to be done to target those at risk—particularly those who may develop type 2 diabetes, the much more common version of the disease. The NHS spends 10% of its budget on diabetes, and 80% of the budget goes toward treating consequences of high blood sugar or poor management of the disease, including amputation, kidney failure, heart disease and stroke. One of the most important things that diabetics must do is to consistently check their blood glucose levels, using whatever products they’re comfortable with, such as test strips for Accu-chek Aviva or Contour test strips. Medication, along with a proper diet and exercise program, are also vitally important. Baroness Young, chief executive of Diabetes UK, said of the figures, “It is frightening to think that one in 17 people you walk past in the street has been diagnosed with the condition.”


Similar sharp increases in the rate of diagnosis have been noted all over the world. Studies in India and China have brought to light the increasingly rapid growth in new cases of the disease, while cases in the United States—previously the ‘winner’ in new cases of diabetes—have remained fairly steady; the steadiness is not much of a positive for the country, however, since the rate remains high. Part of the problem of such precipitous increases in the diagnosis of the disease is that the diabetic accessories like Contour test strips or test strips for Accu-chek Aviva may become more difficult to get access to as larger portions of the population have need of them. Of course, the disease also impacts the quality of life of all patients who have it. Diabetes UK has joined the chorus of organizations around the world calling for more research to understand how the disease occurs, and better prevention efforts. A spokesperson for the NHS England said of the study by Diabetes UK, “Prevention has to be a crucial part of our approach and the risk of developing type 2 diabetes is significantly reduced with a healthy lifestyle.”


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