Leading Indian experts in diabetes have issued a series of urgent recommendations, that included early detection of the condition, to be implemented during the next 200 days to reduce the growing national burden of type 2 diabetes.
The recommendations, which include four pillars of Early Action – prevention, detection, control and access to the right interventions, were presented at the Global Diabetes Policy Forum, held on December 13 and 14 in Berlin, Germany.
“Type 2 diabetes is a ticking time bomb for our country. Every year, more and more people in India are diagnosed with this condition,” said Dr Ashok K Das, Professor of Medicine and Professor and Head of Endocrinology, Pondicherry Institute of Medical Sciences, and Dr Sanjay Kalra, Bharti Research Institute of Diabetes and Endocrinology, Bharti Hospital.
“Our recommendations are aimed at encouraging government, fellow physicians and patients to take early action to prevent, diagnose and control type 2 diabetes,” they said in a statement.
Type 2 diabetes affects more than 69.1 million people in India, said the statement, which said an estimated 1 million deaths per year in India are attributable to type 2 diabetes.
Poorly-controlled type 2 diabetes can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, blindness and kidney failure. In addition to presenting their 200-day plan, the Indian experts joined other international leaders in diabetes at the forum in signing ‘The Berlin Declaration’, a manifesto establishing foundational principles and recommendations to help countries formulate policies likely to improve health outcomes for people living with, or at risk of, diabetes.
The 200-day plan has taken inspiration from this document. “What sets ‘Early Action’ apart from other campaigns is its focus on real action on the ground, aimed at producing concrete benefits for people with diabetes in countries at all levels of income,” said President, International Diabetes Federation, Dr Shaukat Sadikot.
“Every six seconds, someone in the world dies from diabetes. This sobering fact makes it absolutely critical that policymakers take action now, and that a broad range of stakeholders come together to encourage and support needed policy reform,” Sadikot said.
The forum carried forward the work begun under the banner of ‘Early Action in Diabetes’ at the first Global Diabetes Policy Summit, held in Barcelona, Spain, in November 2015. Forum participants plan to reconvene in Rome, Italy, in October 2017 for the third Global Diabetes Policy Summit, where they will take stock of progress achieved in implementing the recommendations of the Berlin Declaration.