Experts gather to discuss the latest innovations in combating worldwide diabetes explosion

by Sarita Sheth on October 11, 2012

Experts gather at the annual conference of the Canadian Diabetes Association

Experts from around the world are in Canada until the end of this week to share innovations and the latest research on diabetes.

They are aiming to improve the lives of those living with diabetes and ultimately work towards finding a cure at the 15th annual conference of the Canadian Diabetes Association.

Canada has one of the highest rates of diabetes prevalence in comparison to its peer countries and its diabetes related mortality is the third highest among its peer countries.

It is estimated that six million Canadians are living with prediabetes and approximately 50% of those Canadians will develop type 2 diabetes.

Nationwide, diabetes rates have almost doubled over the past decade and, unless action is taken now, one in three people in Canada will be living with diabetes or prediabetes by 2020.

‘We’ve identified steps that can be taken now that could dramatically reduce the incidence and seriousness of diabetes while we continue to work towards a cure,’ said Michael Cloutier, president and chief executive officer of the Canadian Diabetes Association.

‘Our Association is committed to developing programmes for the prevention and treatment of diabetes with partners such as governments, healthcare groups and industry,’ he added.

He also pointed out that the cost of diabetes in Canada in 2010 was $11.7 billion and is expected to rise to $16 billion by 2020, just eight years from now.

‘But this does not have to be our future. Our conference brings together the leading researchers and medical professionals to look at steps that can be taken now to change this trend,’ explained Cloutier.

‘The savings in human and financial terms are hard to ignore. A 2% reduction in prevalence rates will save 9% in direct health care costs. That’s $1.5 billion per year by 2020. Perhaps more importantly, people who have prediabetes can delay or avoid onset by educating themselves on how to make healthier lifestyle choices,’ he added.

The conference will focus on a range of diabetes related topics including obesity, Aboriginal populations, women and diabetes and best practices in diabetes management to novel cell-based treatments and new insights into the impact of diabetes on organ functions.

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the Community and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Please see your doctor before making any changes to your diabetes management plan.

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