Charity calls for clarity of free health check numbers (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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Diabetes UK says that there are around 5,700 people in Waltham Forest with undiagnosed diabetes
A national charity has called for clarity over what the council is doing to ensure people are taking advantage of free health checks.
Diabetes UK has estimated that there are 5,700 adults living with diabetes in Waltham Forest, without knowing it.
Today, it has been revealed that the NHS Health Check was given to only 5.3 percent of people between March and December last year after Waltham Forest Council took responsibility for the programme.
According to Diabetes UK the NHS Health Check should have been accessed by more than double this number.
The public health team at Waltham Forest Council took over responsibility for ensuring that checks were made available early in 2013.
Now, the borough is in the bottom ten for provision of the checks which all 40-70-year-olds are eligible for.
The programme assesses people for their risk of Type 2 diabetes and other serious conditions, such as heart disease, kidney disease, stroke and dementia.
Roz Rosenblatt, Diabetes UK’s regional manager for the London is calling for clarity from the Waltham Forest Council.
She said: “While it is good to see that the local authority has increased uptake of NHS Health Checks since it took over management of the programme from the NHS, we would really like to hear from the public health team about their plans to further improve the uptake over the next 12 months and to work with them on addressing any challenges they have identified.”
The number of people assessed has risen by two percent in the last year but is still less than half of what it should be, according to Diabetes UK.
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