Canada is at the tipping point when it comes to diabetes, says the Canadian Diabetes Association, with one in four Canadians affected by the disease.
A recent poll found that 41 percent of respondents believe that their children have or are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
By 2020 it is expected that over 4 million people in Canada will have diabetes. Those figures parallel a Canadian Diabetes Association public opinion poll conducted by Environics Research Group. Almost 90 percent of respondents believe that diabetes is making a serious impact on the healthcare system in Canada.
"Canadians recognize that diabetes is at epidemic proportions and will impact future generations, yet governments are not responding in equal measure," said Michael Cloutier, President and CEO of the Canadian Diabetes Association in a press release. "Our report shows that we are at the tipping point and unless action is taken immediately, diabetes will threaten the health of millions of more Canadians and the future sustainability of the Canadian healthcare system and our economy."
It doesn't matter where you live in Canada when it comes to diabetes. Aboriginal peoples, immigrants, some ethnocultural communities, low-income Canadians and women have been hit hardest by the condition.
The nation's cases have doubled over the past 10 years with 2.7 million people suffering. If the rates continue on the current pattern one in three will be dealing with the effects of the disease by 2020. That means more people will be dealing with diabetes-related side effects that include including heart attack or stroke, kidney failure, blindness, nontraumatic limb amputation and depression.
For Canadians now dealing with the disease, challenges arise when it comes to being able to afford and gain access to medications, devices and supplies. While there are new therapies word-wide access in Canada is not always available. For treatments that are available in Canada the out of pocket costs are high when it comes to Type 2 Diabetes. For those without private insurance or living below the poverty line medications can be out of reach.
For more information the current report is here.