Sharon has backed calls from leading charity Diabetes UK for sustained funding to continue improving treatments and care for people with diabetes.
The charity carried out a consultation with 9,000 people of different ages, ethnicities and backgrounds from across the UK, who shared their experiences of living with diabetes today, and what their hopes and fears were for the future.
Participants identified a number of ways that would make living with diabetes more manageable, including making support for emotional and psychological health more widely available, and better access to healthcare professionals, new technologies and treatments. Respondents also said that they wanted to see better education and information about managing diabetes, and greater support and understanding for people with diabetes at work and at school.
People said they hoped in the future to see more research into a cure, better treatments for all types of diabetes, and to see more done to prevent Type 2 diabetes.
These findings informed Diabetes UK’s new Future of Diabetes report, which was launched at a reception at Parliament on World Diabetes Day (14th November).
In response, Diabetes UK is urging the Government to radically improve health outcomes for people with diabetes, by committing to sustaining transformation funding at current levels of £44 million until at least 2021. The charity is also calling on the Government to challenge the food and drink industry to make their products healthier, build on the work outlined by the Childhood Obesity Plan, and commit to specific measures on front-of-pack food labelling, and tackling junk food marketing to children.
“For someone living with diabetes, the condition affects all aspects of their lives: at home with family, mealtimes, work, exercise and socialising. It can make it hard to live with spontaneity and hope. Lack of understanding about diabetes in the health service, in the workplace, at school and in society generally can lead to people feeling isolated, misunderstood and stigmatised.
“We must listen to what people with diabetes are telling us. Their needs and experiences must be central to the care and support they receive. And by working together we can tackle the issues that matter.
“I will do all I can to ensure all my constituents are supported with their diabetes and that those at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes know what they can do to reduce this risk.”
Diabetes affects more than 4.5 million people in the UK and the number of people living with diabetes is rising fast. Every day, around 700 people are diagnosed with diabetes. That’s one person every two minutes.
Diabetes UK is inviting everyone to join in creating a better future for people with diabetes by campaigning for change, raising awareness and bringing people together. To find out more and for a copy of the Future of Diabetes report go to www.diabetes.org.uk/future-diabetes