New Delhi: An International Diabetes Federation (IDF) report has stated that, people in India will die due to diabetes and its complications by the end of this calendar year. In a statement issued on the World Diabetes Day, IDF president Jean Claude Mbanya said that a recent IDF report has suggested India has crore people living with diabetes. "Moreover, nearly 60% of diabetics in India have never been screened or diagnosed due to lack of awareness. A recent IDF survey shows that a staggering 62.6% of the people in India are not even aware about the complications of the disease." Still home to one-third of the world's 159 million underdeveloped children aged below five years, India has witnessed a sharp decline in the occurrence of stunting, from 48% in 2006 to 38.7% in 2014. Stunting, defined by Unicef as the most common form of under-nutrition, develops as a result of sustained poor dietary intake or repeated infections or both.
"The lack of awareness is something we all need to tackle with a strong will. Diabetes is preventable and diabetics can effectively manage their condition to live better lives without burdening their families and society at large. The report also highlights India's growing burden of non-communicable diseases. It shows cardiovascular disease patients in India spent 30% of their annual family income on related healthcare. The report, a peer reviewed publication, was produced by an independent expert group with members from several premier institutions such as Unicef and Johns Hopkins University.
Stating that diabetes often strikes those under 60 years of age and in their most productive years, Mbanya said, "Such a high numbers of undiagnosed cases means people are putting their lives at risk from diabetes complications such as nerve disease, which can lead to ulceration and amputation of limbs." This spread of awareness will empower them to defeat diabetes through prevention and management. A number of activities have been rolled out as part of the Sanofi Diabetes Blue Fortnight 2012 campaign, to effectively engage the masses in India. These include Doctor for Diabetes Care (D4DC) initiative, an opportunity for doctors and healthcare experts to join and support India's largest ever diabetes awareness drive by pledging to help reduce India's diabetes burden, educate and motivate diabetes patients and their family members to opt for regular blood sugar screening.