Imagine cable news interrupting regularly scheduled programming with breaking news that nearly 30 million Americans—almost 10 percent of the population—have been discovered to have a disease and 86 million more are at risk. We’d quickly hear how federal, state and local governments are mobilizing, and how the general public is reacting. There would be a flurry of attention, action and urgency.
Unfortunately, one doesn’t have to imagine this doomsday scenario. The diabetes epidemic is happening right now, but few seem to acknowledge it, much less have the resolve to address it. But if left unchecked, the human and financial costs of this crisis will continue to skyrocket. Currently the United States’ annual direct health care costs and lost productivity due to diabetes and prediabetes total $322 billion.
But diabetes isn’t just an American epidemic, it’s a global crisis.
Just last year the cost of global health expenditures for the 415 million people living with diabetes exceeded $673 billion, higher than the gross domestic product (GDP) of 177 nations. And if left unchecked, the loss in GDP worldwide will exceed $1.7 trillion between 2011 and 2030, growing more prevalent and more costly.
That’s why we need to shift our attitudes about diabetes, treating it with the urgent attention it deserves.
Today is World Diabetes Day, and as a part of American Diabetes Month® this November, the American Diabetes Association® is raising its voice and rallying millions to do the same—to raise awareness and urgency about this health care crisis and both the human and economic costs that it imposes around the world.
We’re urging everyone to share, advocate and donate to stop diabetes.
- SHARE: The American Diabetes Association, the global authority on diabetes, is urging people living with the disease to share their stories, photos and or videos on social media using the #ThisIsDiabetes to help educate others, break down stereotypes, correct myths and misunderstandings, and create a sense of urgency about the disease.
- ADVOCATE: We’re asking you to become an advocate to help ensure diabetes gets the attention that it deserves and that it needs to disrupt the global momentum of the epidemic. Become an advocate now.
- DONATE: By providing critical resources, individuals can help accelerate the pace of research toward a cure, educational resources for diabetes self-management and treatment resources. Donate today.
Together we can disrupt this health crisis and reverse the momentum of its impact both here in America, and around the world. As a society, we can’t afford to turn a blind eye any longer or leave this disease to the next generation to deal with. The time is now.
Thank you for participating this World Diabetes Day and every day as we seek to end diabetes for good.
Kevin L. Hagan
Chief Executive Officer
American Diabetes Association