Roadmap to reduce CVD in people with diabetes

The World Heart Federation has launched a new “roadmap” aimed at reducing the global burden of CVD in people living with diabetes.

The Roadmap on the prevention of cardiovascular disease among people living with diabetes outlines a vision of an ideal pathway of care, potential roadblocks and proposed solutions, with examples from practice.

Rapid urbanization, unhealthy diets and increasingly sedentary lifestyles have resulted in fast-growing rates of obesity and diabetes, with an estimated 425 million people currently living with diabetes worldwide – around 90 percent have type 2 diabetes. Alarmingly, the situation is set to deteriorate further in the coming decades, with the total number of people with diabetes predicted to increase to over 600 million by 2045. It has been estimated that globally, up to 50 percent of people with diabetes are unaware of their disease.

While diabetes is treatable, even when glucose levels are under control it greatly increases the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD). People with diabetes are 2 to 3 times more likely to have increased risk of coronary artery disease, stroke, myocardial infarction and angina pectoris compared to those without diabetes. Prevention of CVD in people with diabetes is a necessity and preventive strategies predominantly focus on lifestyle management and risk factor interventions.

Professor Karen Sliwa, President of the World Heart Federation (WHF), said:

“Diabetes and its related CVD complications are a huge global issue. All over the world, due to limited resources, countries are struggling to provide the necessary preventive or medical care, with a disproportionate burden falling onlow-and middle-income countries.Given the worldwide impact of the epidemic of CVD and diabetes, we decided to take action to address it globally through this new roadmap on the prevention of CVD among people living with diabetes.”

Developed in partnership with the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), the Roadmap draws on the expertise of diabetes expert clinicians, researchers, implementation science experts and patients from around the world, and presents an integrated approach to patient care, involving the patient perspective, healthcare system perspective and health policy perspective.

Laurence Sperling, Chair of the CVD and Diabetes Roadmap Writing Group explains:

“We have identified important  gaps in the care of people living with diabetes who are a high cardiovascular risk, and focused on priorities and key action areas to close these gaps. We also provide an ‘implementation toolkit’ for successful translation of the Roadmap to national and local initiatives, aiming to ensure that as many people living with diabetes as possible receive optimal preventive care and treatment.

In order to be implemented successfully, the CVD and Diabetes Roadmap requires committed global action. Today, the Roadmap will be launched at the largest cardiovascular congress in the world, which represents the perfect forum to raise awareness of this impactful global epidemic.  Our goal is to  demonstrate how utilization of this roadmap can help a broad base of stakeholders begin to tackle the problem and make a longstanding difference.”

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