How You Can Help Diabetes Patients get Access to Quality Care and Treatment

Diabetes has become a significant health problem in India, with nearly 77 million people suffering from the condition as per the ninth edition of the IDF Diabetes Atlas 2019. Further the IDF study indicates that the global prevalence of the disease is expected to rise to 578.4 million among adults aged 20-79 years by the year 2030. The alarming rise in the numbers has also put a burden on the healthcare system in India.

This disease is a lifelong responsibility that requires timely medical care, proper treatment and self-management to reduce the risk of long-term complications. Often diabetes remains undetected, leading to acute complications at the time of diagnosis.

Advocating for diabetes awareness is more critical than ever before. Raising awareness of the disease will help people understand best practices for diabetes management and dispel myths associated with it.

This November month is dedicated as the diabetes awareness month across the globe. World Diabetes Day is celebrated on 14th November. You can do your part in spreading the word about diabetes by working along with medical professionals, diabetes advocates, the general public, and government organisations to raise awareness and lend your support in any way you can.

No matter if you have been recently diagnosed, or fighting against type 1 or type 2 diabetes for a while, or you are helping a loved one cope with the condition, you can still ensure that people can still have access to quality care by taking part in simple initiatives.

Here’s how you can get involved:

  • Help people understand diabetes and its types by encouraging them to undergo an online test.
  • You can organise “Learn About Diabetes” in schools.
  • You can promote the diabetes awareness campaign by organising a “local diabetes awareness walk.”
  • Arrange an activity at work along with your office colleagues to spread the word
  • Create a knowledge board sharing stats or facts on social media to grab people’s attention. You can also try this at your society campus, workplace, schools or other places where people visit the most.

Diabetes treatment needs to be taken at the right time as careful measures will reduce the risk of life-threatening complications. So, here are a few ways you can take an active role in diabetes care:

  • Members of the diabetes care team, including your physician, nurse educator and dietician, can help you learn the basics of diabetes care.
  • Any diabetic patient having a smoking habit should talk to the doctor for ways to stop smoking or using other types of tobacco.
  • Quality care of diabetes also means undergoing two to four annual check-ups in addition to your yearly physical and routine eye exams. Patients often suffer from retinal damage, glaucoma, or cataract issues; hence consulting an eye care specialist is significant.
  • It is pivotal for diabetes patients to avail routine vaccinations as they are more prone to certain illnesses.
  • Gum infections are also quite common. If there is bleeding of gums or swelling, patients should immediately get in touch with a dentist. Diabetes can also lead to pain, tingling or loss of sensation in your feet.

Treatment of diabetes requires significant changes in the patient lifestyle. While the physician is the central figure managing a diabetic patient’s treatment, a comprehensive team-based approach will effectively help deal with the individual aspects of care.

Along with this, regular monitoring of adherence to therapeutic measures by patients is needed that enables doctors to understand a patient’s health condition. Education and awareness of the disease should be raised for physicians to improve outcomes, making them understand the harmful effects of alternate medicines & also upgrading their knowledge & utility of newer drugs which help in reducing cardiovascular & renal complications.