Capitalising on the post-Olympics healthy living drive

Sep 2012

The Government has been very keen on using the Olympics and Paralympics as a driver for getting more people doing sport and exercise and it seems that, with the post-games euphoria, people are taking up the opportunity of becoming more active.
But there is another driver to this health agenda – the cost to the NHS of the consequences of an unhealthy lifestyle, in particular diabetes. According to the latest figures from the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC), diabetes prescription numbers topped 40 million for the first time last year, a rise of nearly 50% in six years. That now puts the drugs bill for diabetes
at a staggering £760.3 million.
Health Minister Simon Burns responded to the report saying: “The number of people with diabetes has been rising for years, mainly because of an increase in the number of people who are obese due to a lack of exercise and unhealthy diets… it is so important that we take urgent action to tackle the problems caused by obesity.’’
Tackling obesity is something that pharmacy is proving to be well placed to do. It reaches further out into the community to get
the message across about healthy living, for example linking with local diabetic nurses or capitalising on current sports initiatives. And Lipotrim, with the unique Patient Tracker, now has documentation that, in parallel with bariatric surgery, the rapid weight loss induced with Lipotrim can often put type 2 diabetes into remission.
Lipotrim allows pharmacists to offer and document a very effective weight management programme that provides the eassurance of a healthcare professional selecting and monitoring patients, some of whom may have diabetes. And with the current Government push, now is a time for pharmacy to make a real difference.