Immediate action sought to stem rising tide of Manitoba diabetes cases
In this March 14, 2009 file photo, a woman gets ready to check her blood sugar in Sacramento, Calif. (AP Photo/Steve Yeater, File)
The Canadian Press
Published Tuesday, January 10, 2017 12:24PM EST
WINNIPEG -- The Canadian Diabetes Association says the number of Manitobans diagnosed with the disease is expected to grow to almost 10 per cent of the province's population this year.
Figures released by the association yesterday also predict the total will grow by 35 per cent over the next decade.
The report estimates there will be 125,000 Manitobans who have diabetes in 2017, up from 121,000 last year.
Another 202,000 are living with pre-diabetes, as well as 54,000 with undiagnosed diabetes.
The association says Manitoba's indigenous population has a higher percentage of Type 2 diabetes and diagnoses when they are younger.
Hospitalization, doctor visits and inpatient medication for diabetes cost the provincial health system $114 million a year.
"Diabetes has reached epidemic proportions in Canada, including right here in Manitoba, and there is no denying its seriousness," Andrea Kwasnicki, the association's regional director for Manitoba and Nunavut, said in a statement.
"Not only is the number of people with diabetes growing, but so are the serious complications they experience, such as heart attack, stroke, kidney disease, blindness and limb amputation," stated Kwasnicki.
She said it's "critical for government to take immediate action."
The association is calling on the provincial government to expand financial coverage so all people with Type 1 diabetes can get insulin pumps and supplies.
The organization is also calling for the creation of a standard provincial diabetes care pathway to ensure everyone gets the best support needed to manage the disease.
As well, it's seeking development of a policy so students who have diabetes can be supported with blood sugar monitoring and injection while they are at school.