Tough guys on the pitch, but England rugby players Chris Pennell, Henry Slade and footballer Ben Coker all agree it takes true courage to ask for help. The trio is proud to be backing Diabetes UK’s call for more emotional support to be offered to people with diabetes. Research shows that people with diabetes are twice as likely as the general population to suffer from depression levels of anxiety and eating disorders are also significantly higher amongst people with diabetes. Diabetes UK warns, very few get access to the professional psychological support they need.
A survey of 3,845 people with diabetes conducted by the charity found that 68% of people who had needed psychological support said they had not received it.
Access to emotional and psychological support is one of the 15 Healthcare Essentials that Diabetes UK says every person with diabetes – whatever the type – should receive if they are assessed as needing it. The charity is calling for all Clinical Commissioning Groups, the local bodies responsible for healthcare in their areas, to make sure they are commissioning appropriate psychological support services.
The three professional sportsmen, all of whom have Type 1 diabetes, say they are standing shoulder to shoulder to highlight this important issue as they understand firsthand how difficult it can be to live with a lifelong condition which requires constant monitoring and, if not properly managed, can lead to serious complications.
Diabetes UK is asking people with diabetes to take part in their new survey at diabetes.org.uk/care-survey. The information provided is crucial in helping the charity fight for the changes and improvements that will make the most difference to the lives of people with diabetes. To see more about the ‘essentials’ click here.
Chris Pennell, who has played for England, is the current captain of Worcester Warriors, was 19 when he was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes.
Southend United’s Ben Coker, who was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes aged 15.
Exeter Chief’s Henry Slade, scored against Uruguay in his World Cup debut this year was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes just after his 18th birthday.
This news item first appeared in Desang Diabetes Magazine, our free-to-receive digital journal. We cover diabetes news, diabetes management equipment (diabetes kit) and news about food suitable for a diabetic diet. Go to the top of this page to sign up – we just need your email address.