People living with Type 2 Diabetes will now be able to have access to vital support which will also allow them to self-refer onto support courses instead of having to get a referral from their GP.

According to NHS Richmond there are at least 11,825 people in Richmond who live with Type 2 Diabetes.

The 'Diabetes Book & Learn' service by NHS Richmond launches today (November 14), which is also World Diabetes Day.

Roz Rosenblatt, Head of London Region at Diabetes UK, said: “Thousands of people in the Richmond community can book on to a course which offers significant benefits.

"All it takes is a few clicks on the Book & Learn website or by phone and anyone living with Type 2 diabetes in this area can join a course that will improve their knowledge and confidence, plus help them take control of their diabetes and live well for longer.”

The diabetes courses are aimed at helping patients to manage their condition better and significantly decrease their risk of serious complications like blindness and amputations.

And service users will have access to expert support through face-to-face courses or online programmes and will also be able to book themselves onto their choice of course via the website or by phone.

The aim of these specifically designed courses is for people living with Type 2 diabetes to improve their knowledge, skills and confidence, enabling them to take increasing control of their condition and integrate effective self-management into their daily lives.

Dr Jonty Heaversedge, NHS England, London’s Medical Director for Primary Care and Digital Transformation, said:

“It’s great to see south London’s NHS, GPs, hospitals and innovators working together to bring access to practical health care into people’s lives using everyday technology. Diabetes Book & Learn is enabling people to not only live better, healthier lives but to stay ahead of their condition and reduce their risk of serious health complications.

"It couldn’t be easier to learn about how to manage your diabetes if you live in south London thanks to this service.”

The courses have been clinically proven to have a positive impact on individuals including:

• Lowering average blood glucose levels, thereby reducing the risk of complications

• Reducing cholesterol and blood pressure levels

• Improving levels of physical activity

• Improving understanding of diabetes and self-management skills

• Weight reduction