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Surge in diabetes can hamper India’s economic growth

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Mumbai: With diabetes affecting a large section of India’s population, the chronic health condition can adversely affect the country’s economic growth, experts have warned.

“The financial burden of diabetes on India over the next 10 years can increase drastically and threaten the productivity level of the workforce in the country and loss of national income,” said Dr. Avinash Phadke of SRL Diagnostics in Mumbai.

“Diabetes must be made a national health priority, else it will impact India’s growth as an emerging economy,” Phadke said.

A recent study from the University of East Anglia showed that it reduces people’s employment chances and wages around the world.

The study published earlier this year in the journal PharmacoEconomics looked into the economic impact of Type-II diabetes worldwide.

They were surprised to find not only a large cost burden in high-income countries but also in low and middle-income countries – where people with this disease and their families face high costs for treatment.

“Diabetes affects 382 million people worldwide, and that number is expected to grow to 592 million by 2035. It is a chronic disease that has spread widely in recent decades – not only in high-income countries, but also in many populous low and middle-income countries such as India and China,” said lead researcher Till Seuring.

Phadke said that diabetes is fast gaining the status of a potential epidemic in India with more than 62 million individuals currently diagnosed with the disease.

“It may affect 79.4 million individuals by 2030,” Phadke pointed out.

(IANS)

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Indian Entrepreneurs Build Mobile Apps To Help Patients With Diabetes

New app to help track diabetes in rural India

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check-up for diabetes
Check-up for Diabetes. Pixabay

Researchers have developed an innovative smartphone app that could enable community health workers track the growing burden of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, especially in the rural areas.

Named “Smart Health”, the app will be used by community health workers called as ASHAs, who will be trained to screen and identify people suffering from diabetes or at high risk of the disease in the rural communities.

The ASHAs will then offer them lifestyle and diet advice, refer them to a doctor for drug treatment, and follow up on their adherence to treatment and control.

Diabetes
Diabetes. Pixabay

“Around 50 million people in India have Type 2 diabetes and that number is growing every year. The app will help people living in rural areas to access timely, affordable and guideline-based healthcare in the community, reduce the risk of developing life-threatening complications and ultimately save lives,” Vivekanand Jha, Professor and Executive Director of The George Institute for Global Health, said in a statement.

“Digital technology coupled with using the experience and knowledge of local health workers. This is innovation at its best,” he added.

An estimated 25 million people have diabetes in rural India and the number is rising rapidly, the statement said.

The app will expand the role of community health workers with digital technology and help address the growing burden on chronic disease.

It can also serve an example to other countries struggling with the rising cost of providing essential healthcare to their citizens, the researchers said.  IANS

One response to “Indian Entrepreneurs Build Mobile Apps To Help Patients With Diabetes”

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