The number of drugs issued to treat diabetes has soared, new figures show.

In little under a decade the number of prescriptions for the treatment of diabetes has risen by 66.5 per cent, according to the Health and Social Care Information Centre.

In 2013-14, 45.1 million prescription items - including insulin, anti-diabetic drugs and monitoring devices for the condition - were handed out to patients in England, an 18 million rise on the number prescribed in 2005-06.

The HSCIC said this equates to an average of 123,610 items every single day.

It also found that prescriptions given out by GPs to manage diabetes cost the NHS £2.2m on average every day in 2013-14.

HSCIC chair Kingsley Manning said: “Today’s report brings to light the rising costs for managing diabetes in primary care.

“Diabetes continues to be one of the most prevalent life threatening conditions in England and now accounts for almost 10 per cent of the drugs bill. Our latest data highlights the growing implications to the NHS and patients of managing this condition.”