To highlight the observance of World Diabetes Day on November 14, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said more than 220 million people are now affected by diabetes and no country is immune, according to a press release issued by the UN Information Center (UNIC) here on Wednesday.
The full text of Ban’s message reads:
“World Diabetes Day highlights the need for action by governments and their partners to address a chronic, debilitating and costly disease.
“The World Health Organization predicts that diabetes deaths could double between 2005 and 2030. The poorest countries are hardest-hit, with 80 per cent of cases occurring in low- and middle-income states. More than 220 million people are now affected, and no country is immune.
“Early diagnosis and effective treatment are critical. It is unacceptable that people with diabetes die because they lack information, treatment or access to life-saving drugs like insulin. Governments must do everything possible to close all gaps so people with diabetes can recover and avoid the damage to their heart, blood vessels, eyes, kidneys and nerves that is caused by the disease.
“It is crucial to educate people at risk or those who are suffering from the disease so they can avoid complicating factors such as smoking, and understand how to manage their condition. This will prevent long-term complications which take a heavy toll in human suffering and financial cost.
“The World Health Organization’s Global Strategy for the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases identifies ways that individuals, communities and governments can tackle diabetes. In September, the General Assembly will convene a High-level Meeting on the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases. I urge all the participants to use this event to show the world that they are committed to tackling diabetes and other major chronic diseases.
“More broadly, promoting a healthy diet and lifestyle can have a positive impact on the environment by decreasing consumption of highly processed foods and increasing walking, cycling and other forms of transportation that are beneficial to both our bodies and our planet.
“This is a campaign that every individual can also join. On World Diabetes Day, let us all do our part to control the disease and ensure that people who have it receive the care and treatment they need.” (PNA/IRNA)