The South East regional office of Diabetes UK is now officially open. A ceremony held at the office in Epsom was attended by Chris Grayling, local Epsom MP, healthcare professionals, volunteers and fundraisers.
The launch aimed to highlight problems with people in the South East receiving the eye care they need. Poor levels of eye screening are leaving some people with diabetes at serious risk of unnecessary blindness.
"Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in people of working age, so this situation is extremely worrying," said Jill Steaton, South East Regional Manager for Diabetes UK.
"The Department of Health has already indicated that retinal screening should be a priority and resources have been set aside. There are no acceptable excuses for local NHS services not delivering retinal screening."
Douglas Smallwood, Chief Executive of Diabetes UK, said: "It is vital that Diabetes UK have representation in all regions of the country, so I’m delighted that we are able to open an office in the South East."There are 260,000 people diagnosed with diabetes in the South East and a further 100,000 who have the condition, but don’t know it."
He added: "As we open the doors of our new office, we hope to also open the door to improved services for all."