- Published on Wednesday, 14 November 2012 10:11
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Today is World Diabetes Day. Diabetes is one of the main Non Communicable Diseases in the world and the cause of many other diseases.
World Diabetes Day raises global awareness of diabetes - its escalating rates around the world and how to prevent the illness in most cases. Started by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and WHO, the Day is celebrated on 14 November to mark the birthday of Frederick Banting who, along with Charles Best, was instrumental in the discovery of insulin in 1922, a life-saving treatment for diabetes patients.
WHO estimates that more than 346 million people worldwide have diabetes. This number is likely to more than double by 2030 without intervention. Almost 80% of diabetes deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries.
Sri Lanka celebrates the World Diabetes Day under the theme "Be active-Be Healthy" and the ‘Diabetes Walk 2012’ organized by the Colombo University Medical Faculty Diabetes Research Unit, “Tharunyata Hetak” Youth Organization, Health Ministry National Nutrition Secretariat and Education Ministry commenced near the Diyawanna Park in Battaramulla on Tuesday (13) with the participation of First Lady Shiranthi Rajapaksa as the Chief Guest. Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena and Education Minister Bandula Gunawardena participated at the inauguration. It was organized as an awareness raising programme parallel to the ‘World Diabetes Day’ which falls today.
Sri Lanka's Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena said that half of Sri Lankans will be victims of diabetes by 2050 if current trends continue and already between 10-15% of schoolchildren are suffering from diabetes and 4% are suffering from obesity. He added that currently close to 25% of the population is suffering from diabetes and over 200 patients use government hospitals daily for treatment.