Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Ontario Economic Prosperity Theatened by Diabetes

Canadian Diabetes Association Releases Ontario Diabetes Report

TORONTO, September 8, 2010 /Canada NewsWire/ - The Canadian Diabetes Association released today the findings from its Ontario Diabetes Cost Model. The model shows that the cost and prevalence of diabetes in the province has risen sharply over the last 10 years and, without action, will continue to increase substantially over the next 10 years.

"The economic burden of diabetes in Ontario is staggering and threatens the sustainability of our healthcare system and the provincial economy," said Michael Cloutier, President and CEO, Canadian Diabetes Association. "It's estimated the direct and indirect financial impact of diabetes in Ontario currently costs the province $4.9 billion per year. By 2020, these costs will increase to $7 billion per year if we don't take action."

The economic burden of diabetes represents only a part of Ontario's challenge. The human cost of the disease is also reaching epidemic proportions in the province. The Ontario Diabetes Cost Model estimates that there are currently 1.2 million people, or 8.2 per cent of the population, diagnosed with diabetes in Ontario - increasing to more than 1.9 million people, or 11.9 per cent of the population, by 2020. These figures do not include people undiagnosed with diabetes or people living with prediabetes, where blood glucose levels are higher than normal but not high enough for an individual to be diagnosed with the disease.

"One in four Ontarians will be living either with diabetes or prediabetes by 2020," said Cloutier. "Turning the tide against diabetes requires a significant shift in government approach, private sector involvement and broad-based personal and societal change."

To offset the burden caused by diabetes, the Canadian Diabetes Association has recommended that the government adjust its current Ontario Diabetes Strategy to reflect three key priorities: a broad-based diabetes prevention strategy, a targeted population-at-risk strategy and a diabetes complications prevention strategy.

"We need to focus on how we think about and approach diabetes management and prevention in our province," added Cloutier.

This is the second provincial cost model report released by the Canadian Diabetes Association. The first report was released this past May for New Brunswick. The Association continues to roll out diabetes cost models for all provinces and territories.

About the Ontario Diabetes Cost Model

The Ontario Diabetes Cost Model was created for the Association by the Centre for Spatial Economics based on the Canadian Diabetes Cost Model developed by Informetrica Limited. The two main sources of data used for the estimate and forecasts come from the National Diabetes Surveillance System (NDSS) and Health Canada's study the Economic Burden of Illness in Canada (EBIC). The Model aimed to integrate the administrative prevalence and incidence estimates from NDSS with the economic cost estimates from EBIC. The Ontario Diabetes Cost Model follows the Association's An Economic Tsunami: The Cost of Diabetes in Canada. This economic report was supported by an unrestricted educational grant provided by Novo Nordisk Canada Inc.

About the Canadian Diabetes Association

The Canadian Diabetes Association is leading the fight against diabetes by helping people with diabetes live healthy lives while we work to find a cure. We are supported in our efforts by a community-based network of volunteers, employees, healthcare professionals, researchers and partners. By providing education and services, advocating on behalf of people with diabetes, supporting research, and translating research into practical applications - we are delivering on our mission. For more information, please visit or call 1-800-BANTING (226-8464).

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