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Europe’s children top the global diabetes stakes

18,000 children in Europe develop type 1 diabetes in 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. The findings also show that 116,000 children in Europe have type 1 diabetes with 18,000 new cases in 2011, this is the highest estimate of all IDF regions.

IDF estimates that 52.8 million of the European adult population will have diabetes by the end of 2011 rising to 64.2 by 2030. Additionally, 19 million people are living with diabetes but are yet to be diagnosed.

The Russian Federation at 12.6 million has the highest prevalence of diabetes in Europe followed by Portugal and Cyprus. Europe accounts for one third of the total global spending on diabetes care. IDF. The European office of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) urges European governments to provide adequate care for people living with diabetes or risk higher health costs due to complications.

Chris Delicata, Chair of IDF Europe said “Having the highest rate of children with type 1 diabetes, is a poignant reminder that we need to keep diabetes on top of the EU’s health agenda. In this time of financial turmoil, European governments cannot afford to cut back on access to essential care”.

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. This marks a major milestone for diabetes and NCDs. However in some areas stronger commitments are needed.

To keep up the pressure on European decision makers after the Summit, IDF Europe hosted an event at the Council of Europe on 10 November and will host an event in the European Parliament on November 15. 
This is the first time IDF Europe organizes an event in the Council of Europe to mark November 14. The purpose will be to raise awareness about diabetes and the growing epidemic proportions in the European region.

It is hoped that campaigns and events such as World Diabetes Day continue to raise the voice of people with diabetes and move advocacy to action on a global scale.
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