Sheehan calls for Diabetes Strategy implementation
Sinn Féin spokesperson for Health Pat Sheehan has stressed the importance of prevention and early intervention in tackling diabetes.
Commenting after the publication of an Audit Office report into the lack of implementation of a 2003 review of diabetes services, the West Belfast MLA said: "There are between 90,000 to 100,000 people living with diabetes in the north of Ireland with Type 2 diabetes estimated to account for 90% of cases.
"It is accepted that there needs to be a focus on prevention and early-intervention approaches in health generally to reduce the prevalence of a number of health conditions, including diabetes.
"Approximately 10% of the health budget is spent on the treatment of diabetes and its complications and this cost to the health budget will only increase if it not addressed."
"The Diabetes Strategic Framework and the Diabetes Network launched by Michelle O'Neill as Minister for Health in 2016 also puts a focus on the prevention of Type 2 diabetes.
"Implementation of the Diabetes Strategy is needed if we are to tackle the growing instances of diabetes in the north of Ireland."