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Diabetes grows at an alarming pace

MANAGED CARE March 2014. © MediMedia USA
Managed Care Outlook

Diabetes grows at an alarming pace

What health experts know about the worldwide diabetes epidemic is scary; what they don’t know is even scarier. There are about 382 million people with diabetes in the world, but that number will be much higher by 2035, according to the IDF Diabetes Atlas, published by the International Diabetes Federation (http://tinyurl.com/IDF-exec-summary). “The new estimates show an increasing trend towards younger and younger people developing diabetes, a trend that is very worrisome for future generations,” the Atlas states. “If current demographic patterns continue, more than 592 million people will be affected with diabetes within a generation. This figure takes into account changes only in the population and patterns of urbanization, and is almost certainly an underestimation.”

The atlas says it is a misconception that diabetes is a disease of wealthy nations, noting that 80% of those with the disease live in low- and middle-income countries. “Despite the array of tools at our disposal to tackle the disease — effective drug therapies, advanced technology, ever-improving education and preventive strategies — the battle to protect people from diabetes and its disabling, life-threatening complications is being lost.”

Number with diabetes

Millions, by region

Source: IDF Diabetes Atlas, Sixth Edition; Managed Care calculation of percentages using data from The World Factbook, published by the CIA.

Top 10 countries/territories of number of people with diabetes (20–79 years), 2013
Place Millions % of population
Germany 8 9%
Egypt 8 9%
U.S.A. 24 8%
Russia 11 8%
Mexico 9 7%
China 98 7%
Japan 7 6%
Brazil 12 6%
India 65 5%
Indonesia 9 3%
Source: IDF Diabetes Atlas, Sixth Edition; Managed Care calculation of percentages using data from The World Factbook, published by the CIA.
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