Diabetes checks breakthrough

A DIABETES screening event for ethnic minorities, which is the first of its kind in East Anglia, will be taking place in Ipswich this month.Hundreds of people are expected to turn up to the event at Suffolk College to receive free eye-tests and blood pressure checks, which could uncover the early signs of the condition.

A DIABETES screening event for ethnic minorities, which is the first of its kind in East Anglia, will be taking place in Ipswich this month.

Hundreds of people are expected to turn up to the event at Suffolk College to receive free eye-tests and blood pressure checks, which could uncover the early signs of the condition.

East Anglian Indian Association member Ashok Bhatt is co-ordinating the event.

He said: "We have done similar things on a smaller scale at various events during the last year, such as the Indian Mela in Kesgrave and the Bangladeshi health awareness day, and we have seen how beneficial it can be.

"It is well known that ethnic minority groups have many obstacles in accessing very basic primary health care in the UK, for a variety of socio-economic reasons, and that diabetes can be more prevalent in some ethnic minority groups."

Nurses and doctors will carry out the tests and there will also be consultants from Ipswich Hospital on hand to give advice and guidance.

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Mr Bhatt said: "There are millions of people in the UK who are not aware that they may have diabetes.

"If they are not screened they may only find out when the condition worsens or when they are being treated for another illness."

There will be a number of different charities at the event with information on healthcare and a range of different conditions.

The event is a partnership between a number of different organisations including the Ipswich Primary Care Trust, Suffolk County Council and Ipswich Borough Council.

Mr Bhatt said: "I think it is important to stress that this is a real community event. Many people from the local community have pulled together to make this a success.

"All of the doctors and nurses that are there will be from the local area, because the people who they are testing could well end up being their patients."

The event takes place on Sunday September 26 at the Main Hall, Suffolk College, from 12pm to 5pm.

If you are interested in attending and would like more information call 01473 215145.

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