Posted on January 28, 2015

A major report looking at the prevalence of type 2 diabetes will warn that cases in people aged 20-39, currently at nearly 63 million globally, are set to rise by 19 percent to nearly 75 million (close to the entire population of Turkey[1]) if measures are not urgently taken to stem the tide of the disease[2].

This equates to around 12 million new cases in those aged 20-39 by 2035. Diagnoses of type 2 in children, which used to be rare, is increasing. In some countries, type 2 diabetes now accounts for almost half of new cases in children and adolescents[3].

The report warns that the health consequences of the condition, which include heart disease, stroke, diabetic retinopathy, kidney disease and lower limb amputations, are more severe than generally recognised, and calls on policymakers around the world to act to prevent rising rates. It is estimated that up to 80 per cent of cases of type 2 diabetes could be prevented through changing diet, increasing physical activity and improving the living environment[4].

Type 2 diabetes rates are also increasing throughout the world’s adult population and experts warn that it is set to affect nearly 600 million people by 2035 (equating to around 10 per cent of the world’s adult population), at a projected cost of USD627 billion globally[5].

According to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), between 2013 – 2035, the countries with the highest growth in diabetes prevalence will be UAE, Oman and Qatar[6]. Rates in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) as a whole will increase by 96.2 per cent by 2035[7].

Additionally, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait already feature on the IDF’s top 10 list of countries with the largest comparative prevalence rates from 2014[8].

Today’s children to face [qatarisbooming.com].jpgThe findings of the report will be presented in full at the World Innovation Summit for Health (WISH), a global initiative of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), to be attended by more than 1,000 health policymakers and specialists from around the world, in Doha, Qatar from 17-18 February, 2015. Through WISH, experts inspire and diffuse healthcare innovation and best practice, remaining closely aligned to the vision and mission of Qatar Foundation to unlock human potential and serve to underscore Qatar’s pioneering role as an emerging centre for healthcare innovation.

Speaking ahead of the summit, Diabetes Forum Chair Professor Stephen Colagiuri, Professor of Metabolic Health at the University of Sydney, Australia, said: “Type 2 diabetes is fast becoming a worldwide epidemic and it is extremely worrying that we are starting to see it increasing in younger generations. Our report will aim to equip policymakers with the information they need to assess the health and cost impacts of the disease, learn from interventions that work and ultimately put in place measures to help stem the tide of diabetes.It is vital that policymakers act to put interventions in place for the sake of current and future generations.”

Professor The Lord Darzi of Denham (pictured), Executive Chair of WISH and Director of the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College of London, said: “Combatting rising rates of type 2 diabetes should be a worldwide priority. Often the impact of diabetes, alongside other chronic conditions, is underestimated but the findings of this report will highlight to both policymakers and the public the true scale of the problem we are facing.

“We must act now to prevent the disease before it becomes unmanageable for future generations. I am delighted that the report by Professor Stephen Colagiuri and his colleagues will set out practical steps for combatting the disease at the upcoming World Innovation Summit for Health and I hope their recommendations will be heeded.” WISH inspires and diffuses healthcare innovation and best practice, remaining closely aligned to the vision and mission of Qatar Foundation to unlock human potential and serve to underscore Qatar’s pioneering role as an emerging center for healthcare innovation.

 


[1]According to TurkStat the population of Turkey in 2013 was 76,481,847: http://www.turkstat.gov.tr/PreHaberBultenleri.do?id=15844

[2]Based on figures from the International Diabetes Federation (IDF). IDF Diabetes Atlas, 6th edn: http://www.idf.org/sites/default/files/EN_6E_Atlas_Full_0.pdf(p141). Current figure for 20-39 year olds with diabetes 62,991,980. Experts expect this to rise by 19% to 74,960,456 by 2035, an increase of 11,968,476.

[3] World Health Organisation 10 facts about diabetes: http://www.who.int/features/factfiles/diabetes/facts/en/index4.html

[5]International Diabetes Federation (IDF). IDF Diabetes Atlas, 6th edn: http://www.idf.org/sites/default/files/EN_6E_Atlas_Full_0.pdf (p14)

[6]International Diabetes Federation (IDF). IDF Diabetes Atlas, 6th edn. Brussels: IDF, 2013.

[7]International Diabetes Federation (IDF). IDF Diabetes Atlas, 6th edn. http://www.idf.org/sites/default/files/EN_6E_Atlas_Full_0.pdf (p 12)

[8]International Diabetes Federation (IDF). IDF Diabetes Atlas, 6th edn. http://www.idf.org/sites/default/files/EN_6E_Atlas_Full_0.pdf (p33)

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