Diabetes: An Update on the Pandemic and Potential Solutions

Authors: Mohammed Ali, Karen Siegel, Eeshwar Chandrasekar, Nikhil Tandon, Pablo Aschner Montoya, Jean Claude Mbanya, Juliana Chan, Ping Zhang, KM Venkat Narayan


The global burden of diabetes remains colossal, especially among those least equipped to pay for treatment of end-stage disease. A general consensus exists—combining evidence from published sources and expert opinions—that interventions to identify risk and to prevent and manage diabetes prove effective, important, and provide value in most settings. Large gaps exist in our understanding of how to facilitate implementation, engagement, and sustained success, however, especially in diverse settings. Governments could consider supporting research to address data gaps with regard to (1) distribution and natural history of disease, implementation sciences, and cost-lowering technologies; (2) building capacity; (3) strengthening infrastructure; and (4) covering up-front costs to catalyze socially valued programs. Given the pluralistic and evolving needs and priorities in different countries and health care systems—many of which have experienced changes in disease prevalence, capacity, and financing—ongoing research and evaluation of health system and societal interventions remain essential to guide policy makers, donors, communities, and care providers.