Diabetes Demands Decisive Action

Last week the CDC issued the latest statistics on diabetes. The number of Americans with diabetes grew 15 percent between 2005 and 2007. Nearly 24 million people (8 percent of the population) now have the disease.

The increase may be attributed in part to better detection, but the situation remains dire. Another 57 million Americans are likely to be prediabetic and at risk, particularly due to obesity and sedentary lifestyles.
Approximately 3 out of 5 people with Type 2 Diabetes commonly suffer at least one serious comorbidity such as heart disease, stroke, eye damage, kidney disease or foot problems that can lead to amputation.
The personal cost is incalculable. And the monetary cost is enormous. In 2006, America spent an estimated $22.9 billion on medical costs directly related to diabetes complications.
New statistics on diabetes are yet another call to action for hospitals and health systems.
How well is your organization doing with outreach for diabetes awareness, diagnosis, treatment and management? Could you take a more proactive and effective approach? Have you bundled services around the needs of diabetics and improved access to care?
It is estimated that in 2007 nearly 25 percent of Americans age 60 and older had diabetes, either diagnosed or undiagnosed. As a starting point, that group could benefit greatly from decisive action on diabetes.
— Tom DeSanto

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