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Issue Date:- 28 April 2008


THE increasing number of men and women who are turning their lives around by choosing to start up a new business are highlighted in the Barclays Trading Places Awards launched this week.

The government backed Awards, presented in association with The Prince’s Trust, feature practical examples of people who have taken control of their lives by deciding to go it alone.  Previous winners include a single mum who overcame physical abuse to set up a successful beauty business and a former policeman who lost an arm and his career but went on to establish a driving school for the disabled.

Whether it is overcoming a failed relationship, turning your back on benefits, or transforming your life when dealing with a physical disability we would like to hear from you.  The Awards are open to everyone who has been trading for a minimum of 3 months and a maximum of 3 years, with an annual turnover of less than £1 million.

Launching Trading Places 2008, Barclays’ Marketing Director for Local Business, John Davis, said:- “This is a celebration of Merseyside’s unsung heroes who, in spite of great personal challenges, have taken steps to establish a sustainable business and in doing so changed the direction of their lives – for the benefit of themselves and their families.  We are delighted to have this opportunity of celebrating the inspiring achievement of these individuals whilst highlighting an increasingly important sector of the business community – the sole traders and small business operations that underpin our economy.”

Other supporters are the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR), Jobcentre Plus, The National Federation of Enterprise Agencies (NFEA) and Microsoft.

John Hutton, Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform, said:- “I am delighted to once again have the opportunity to support the Barclays Trading Places Awards. The Government recognises the need to unlock enterprising talent amongst people of all sections of society and its role in encouraging people to have the ambition to start and grow their own businesses.

I would like to congratulate all those involved in this year’s Awards and wish you every success for the event.”

Entries for the Barclays Trading Places Awards; now in their 4th year, must be in by 30 May 2008. Nomination leaflets are available by calling 0800 085 3203 or visiting

Judges will select 10 National Finalists who will attend a prestigious Awards Dinner in London at the Marriott Hotel, Grosvenor Square, on 7 October 2008, where they will each be awarded £1,100 worth of desktop software by Microsoft.

The winner will receive a further £2,200 worth of Microsoft server software.  In addition the winner and runner-up, to be announced on the night, will receive £10,000 and £5,000 respectively, courtesy of Barclays.

For further information or to arrange an interview please contact Rebecca Deeny or Kate Polson at Aspect Communications on 0208 673 2020 / 07795 694 863 / 0785 290 2719

Inconsistent NHS risks lives of 270,000 people with diabetes

PATCHY NHS services are putting 270,000 people with diabetes in the North West at increased risk of serious complications, some of which can reduce life expectancy, including heart disease, stroke and blindness. Leading health charity Diabetes UK releases a report today warning that the Government will fail to deliver on standards it set itself five years ago if it doesn’t refocus NHS efforts.

In 2003, the National Service Framework (NSF) for Diabetes set out a vision for diabetes services in England to be delivered by 2013. Half way through the 10 year plan, Diabetes UK’s Five years on… Are we half way there? report reviews the NHS’s progress in achieving person-centred, co-ordinated care that aims to ensure fewer people develop diabetes and better care for those who have the condition.

The charity concludes that, while some people with diabetes in some parts of the country receive excellent care, many are still not benefiting from the effective delivery of diabetes services that the NSF set out to achieve. Many healthcare professionals and diabetes communities have been working hard to deliver high quality integrated care but, without local organisation and investment, efforts are often in vain.

Julie Byron, North West Regional Manager for Diabetes UK, said:- “We are very worried about the slow progress the NHS is making towards delivering all the NSF standards by 2013. It is not good enough that more than 270,000 people with diabetes in the North West are facing an unnecessarily increased risk of life-threatening complications because of the Government’s failure to address the quality of diabetes services across the country. Action is needed today to safeguard the health and quality of life of everyone with diabetes in the future.

Diabetes UK is calling for the Government to conduct its own national review of progress made to date in delivering the 2013 NSF standards and targets. There have been significant structural changes in the NHS in the past 5 years which need to be taken into account to ensure we have a relevant strategy in place to achieve these goals. The Government also needs to make Primary Care Trusts truly accountable for delivery of the NSF and challenge those not performing.”

Diabetes UK’s report found that, despite prevention being a key NSF objective, only 1 in 20 Primary Care Trusts (PCTs) has a specific strategy for preventing Type 2 diabetes and obesity. In addition, only 38% of PCTs provide emotional and psychological support to adults with diabetes which is not conducive to the NSF’s aim of supporting and educating people to deal with their diabetes, after all, more than 95% of diabetes management is self care. As only 26% of the 280,000 people with diabetes in the North West have the full range of care processes carried out each year, more than 206,000 are being put at increased risk of complications.

Moves such as Alan Johnson MP’s recent announcement of vascular screening to include diabetes are vital, as the report found that fewer PCTs (57%) had an early identification programme for diabetes in place in 2007 than did in 2006 (60%). There are an estimated 65,000 people in the North West with Type 2 diabetes who don’t yet know it, and failure to identify and treat them puts them, too, at increased risk of life-threatening complications.

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