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Shrivastava U.,Center for Public Health India | Misra A.,Center for Public Health India | Gupta R.,Fortis Escorts Hospital | Viswanathan V.,M.V. Hospital for Diabetes | Viswanathan V.,Viswanathan Diabetes Research Center
Journal of Diabetes | Year: 2016

Diabetes is an escalating problem in India and has major socioeconomic dimensions. Rapid dietary changes coupled with decreased levels of physical activity have resulted in increases in obesity and diabetes in rural and semi-urban areas, as well as in urban-based people living in resettlement colonies. Increasing risk has also been recorded in those who suffered from poor childhood nutrition and in rural-to-urban migrants. Social inequity manifests in disparities in socioeconomic status (SES), place of residence, education, gender, and level of awareness and affects prevention, care, and management. All these population subsets have major socioeconomic challenges: low levels of awareness regarding diabetes and prevention, inadequate resources, insufficient allotment of healthcare budgets, and lack of medical reimbursement. Unawareness and delays in seeking medical help lead to complications, resulting in many-fold increased costs in diabetes care. These costs plunge individuals and households into a vicious cycle of further economic hardship, inadequate management, and premature mortality, resulting in more economic losses. At the societal level, these are massive losses to national productivity and the exchequer. Overall, there is an immediate need to strengthen the healthcare delivery system to generate awareness and for the prevention, early detection, cost-effective management, and rehabilitation of patients with diabetes, with a focus on people belonging to the lower SES and women (with a particular focus on nutrition before and during pregnancy). Because of an enhanced awareness campaign spearheaded through the National Program on Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cancer, Diabetes and Stroke (NCPCDS) initiated by Government of India, it is likely that the level of awareness and early detection of diabetes may increase. © 2016 Ruijin Hospital, Shanghai Jiaotong University School of Medicine and Wiley Publishing Asia Pty Ltd.

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