International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

November 14, 2011 08:00 ET

Diabetes on the Increase but Health Expenditures Remain Low

Only 4.5% of All Global Spending on Diabetes Is Attributed to the South and Central America Region

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM--(Marketwire - Nov. 14, 2011) - World Diabetes Day 2011 marks the release of the International Diabetes Federation's (IDF) 5th edition of the Diabetes Atlas. New figures indicate that the number of people living with diabetes is expected to rise from 366 million in 2011 to 552 million by 2030. In South and Central America 25.1 million people have diabetes. Due to continuing urbanisation and shifts in population age the number is expected to increase by close to 60% by 2030. Despite this, the region still only spends USD 20.8 billion that's 4.5% of global expenditures on diabetes.

Brazil has the highest number of people with diabetes at 12.4 million, followed by Columbia, Venezuela and Argentina. IDF also estimates that 11.2 people in the region remain undiagnosed.

"We are very concerned by the increase in cases of diabetes in the region" said Manuel Vera Gonzalez, IDF's Chair in the South and Central America Region "as the numbers are expected to increase by 2030, we need to urge governments to act now and consider how health systems can be strengthened to deal with the shock of this epidemic, whilst at the same time seeing how we can prevent new cases developing where possible".

The regional figures echo the shocking increase in diabetes on a global level. "In every country and in every community worldwide, we are losing the battle against this cruel and deadly disease" said Jean Claude Mbanya, President of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) "We want World Diabetes Day 2011 to bring these alarming diabetes facts into the global spotlight. We demand that public and world leaders act on diabetes now".

The release of these figures follow the September meeting of 193 Heads of State and government at the UN in New York to agree on a Political Declaration on Non-communicable Diseases (NCDs) including diabetes.

Regional diabetes activists are also joining the World Diabetes Day campaign to keep awareness high after the UN Summit.

It is hoped that campaigns such as today's World Diabetes Day and events in the South America region will continue to raise the voice of people with diabetes and move advocacy to action on a global scale.

About World Diabetes Day

World Diabetes Day (WDD) is celebrated every year on November 14. The World Diabetes Day campaign is led by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and its member associations. It engages millions of people worldwide in diabetes advocacy and awareness. World Diabetes Day was created in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization in response to growing concerns about the escalating health threat that diabetes now poses. World Diabetes Day became an official United Nations Day in 2007 with the passage of United Nations Resolution 61/225. The campaign draws attention to issues of paramount importance to the diabetes world and keeps diabetes firmly in the public spotlight. This year sees the third of a five-year campaign that will address the growing need for diabetes education and prevention programmes.

About the International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) is an umbrella organisation of over 200 national diabetes associations in over 160 countries. It represents the interests of the growing number of people with diabetes and those at risk. The Federation has been leading the global diabetes community since 1950. IDF's mission is to promote diabetes care, prevention and a cure worldwide.

For more information on the 5th edition Diabetes Atlas and country-by-country statistics visit:

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Contact Information

  • For more information on country and region specific data,
    please contact: International Diabetes Federation
    Sara Webber, PR Coordinator
    +32 2 543 16 39 or +32 496 12 94 70