The Diabetes Summit for South East Asia is being organised in Chennai from 28th to 30th November 2008, by the World Diabetes Foundation ( WDF) , in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO), South East Asia Regional office (SEARO), the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the World Bank.
The aim of this summit is to serve as a forum where key stakeholders, in the area of non communicable diseases (primarily diabetes), can interact with key opinion leaders, international media and WDF partners, with a view to encourage policy makers to prioritise prevention, care and treatment of diabetes in the developing world in a sustainable manner.
Diabetes is one of the fastest growing diseases in the world with over 230 million people already affected. It is the world’s leading cause of heart disease, stroke, blindness, kidney disease and lower limb amputation. The incidence of diabetes is five times higher among Asians than in white populations.
An estimated 3.8 million people died in 2007, globally, because of diabetes. In India, unwittingly known as the ‘diabetes capital of the world’, an estimated 40.9 million people were living with diabetes in 2007. This figure is projected to rise to 69.9 million by 2025, making every fifth person living with diabetes to be an Indian.
WHO estimates that mortality from diabetes and heart disease cost India $210 billion yearly in terms of lost productivity resulting from premature deaths. This is likely to increase to $335 billion yearly in the next 10 years.
Dr Tareq Salahuddin, from Chennai
Source: The Daily Star, November 29, 2008