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Managing diabetes in Sheffield during the covid-19 pandemic

Managing diabetes in Sheffield during the covid-19 pandemic
17 September 2020

A lead GP for planning diabetes services in Sheffield is warning the public of the risks associated with covid-19 and type 2 diabetes.

There are 31,500 people in Sheffield living with diabetes, 90% of those people have type 2. People with type 2 diabetes are at greater risk of developing serious health implications if they contract covid-19. 

Dr Jenny Stephenson, a GP at Stannington Medical Centre and lead GP for diabetes service planning within NHS Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group explains the risks and how to manage them.

Dr Stephenson said: “An alarming statistic has showed us that 21% of deaths from covid-19 in England occurred in people with diabetes, especially type 2. Although you aren’t more likely to contract covid-19 if you have diabetes you are at a greater risk of serious health implication if you do contract the virus.

“This can be a result of varying factors such as increasing age, obesity and how well the diabetes is controlled.  For some people with diabetes, their immune system cannot cope with the virus.”

If you have diabetes it’s important that you are managing it well and there are programmes in Sheffield designed to help, speak to your GP for more information about this. Although there's no cure for type 2 diabetes studies show it's possible for some people to reverse it through diet changes and weight loss.

Dr Stephenson added: “Everyone can benefit from making healthier lifestyle choices as a healthier body is stronger at fighting disease. A healthier lifestyle can also prevent you from developing type 2 diabetes. This can be achieved through eating a healthy, balanced diet, being more active and maintaining a healthy weight.”

It’s important for everyone to follow covid-19 safety guidance but particularly so if you have a long term condition such as diabetes. Keep at least 2 meters apart from people outside of your household, wash your hands regularly, avoid touching your face and wearing a face covering in places where it is mandatory, to lesson your risk of contracting covid.


Diabetes & activity programmes:

Diabetes Prevention Programme (self-referral and through GP)

Diabetes UK - know your risk tool

Move More Sheffield activity programme

NHS Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group

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S9 4EU

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