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Youth diabetes mortality rate highest in EU

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Teenagers are at a higher risk of dying of diabete Teenagers are at a higher risk of dying of diabetes

The number of people aged between 15 and 24 who die as a result of diabetes is 'high and rising', according to a study by the Institute of Child Health.

The study examined WHO data on diabetes mortality rates in children aged 0-24 taken between 1990 and 2010. They found that the rate of the deaths caused by diabetes in those aged between 15 and 24 in 2010 was almost twice as high as it had been in 1990.

The male death rate in the 15-24 age group was 0.45 per 100,000 in 2010, compared to 0.25 in 1990, while the female death rate in the age group was 0.25 in 2010, compared to 0.15 in 1990. The study's authors suggested that the reason for the rise is a combination of higher levels of poverty and other population factors.

Barbara Young, Diabetes UK chief executive, said: 'It is worrying that poor diabetes control is leading to deaths in children, however we know that in reality it is only an incredibly small number of children and young people with diabetes, aged under 24, who die.'

The research also found that in children aged between 0 and 15, the rate of diabetes mortality fell at a higher rate than any other country in the EU.

Ms Young added: 'More still needs to be done. For example improved education, greater access to technology, such as insulin pumps, and better support in schools, can all help to give children with diabetes the best possible chance of living a long and healthy life.'

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