According to the latest figures released by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), approximately 366 million people worldwide now suffer from diabetes. In 2009, it was estimated that 300 million people were diagnosed with the disease, so the large uptick in patients is extremely alarming. Moreover, the new figures estimate that each year, approximately 4.6 million deaths are linked to the disease.

What’s more discouraging, is that these figures are still considered to be underestimated, based on the fact that several countries lack the ability to properly collect and analyze data. Researchers are forced to make assumptions based on the data from neighboring countries of those with limited information.

During a recent press briefing at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD), the President of IDF, Dr. Jean Claude Mbanya, stated that, “We don’t want world leaders to forget about diabetes, which is a tsunami of the 21st century.” Mbanya went on to note that overall global spending on patient care for diabetes is upwards of $465 billion.

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