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LETTER TO EDITOR
J Res Med Sci 2016,  21:60

Preparing the world to meet diabetes-related needs of the refugee population


Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Web Publication01-Aug-2016

Correspondence Address:
Saurabh RamBihariLal Shrivastava
3rd Floor, Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Ammapettai Village, Thiruporur Guduvancherry Main Road, Sembakkam Post, Kancheepuram - 603 108, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/1735-1995.187308

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How to cite this article:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Preparing the world to meet diabetes-related needs of the refugee population. J Res Med Sci 2016;21:60

How to cite this URL:
Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J. Preparing the world to meet diabetes-related needs of the refugee population. J Res Med Sci [serial online] 2016 [cited 2019 Dec 8];21:60. Available from: http://www.jmsjournal.net/text.asp?2016/21/1/60/187308

Sir,

The recent estimates suggest that the global prevalence of diabetes was 9% among adults, with almost 1.5 million deaths being directly attributed to the disease worldwide. [1] Further, more than four-fifths of these deaths have been reported from low- and middle-income nations, which in itself remain one of the biggest public health challenges. [1] However, amidst the rising incidents of conflicts across the globe, the burden of noncommunicable diseases including diabetes among the refugees has remarkably increased. [2]

Worldwide, close to 60 million people have been displaced in the last decade alone, with millions of them flee to seek refuge and safety while the crises persist in their parent nations. [2],[3] In fact, in Syria alone, since the inception of the conflict in 2011, more than 4.5 million residents have left their nation and migrated to the neighboring nations such as Jordan, Lebanon, and others in meeting their health and other basic needs. [2],[3],[4]

Even though the nations have adopted the United Nations policy to offer routine health, education, and other services to the refugees, nevertheless the infrastructure constraints have limited its scope. [3],[4] This is predominantly due to the influx of a large number of refugees and limited/no development of parallel health systems to respond to their needs in host nations. [2],[4] In addition, there are some issues pertaining to the cost of care, logistics constraints, drugs shortage, transport, longer waiting times, insensitive health staffs, and poor awareness among the refugees about the range of services offered and different aspects of diabetes. [2],[3],[4] All these are serious challenges for the program managers as most of the adverse complications of diabetes can be prevented, provided the population has easy access to diagnostic and management services. [1],[2],[3]

A wide range of interventions are identifying the areas where a maximum number of refugees have taken shelter for ensuring rational allocation of resources, offering free health care services through public health sector, roping in and supporting nongovernmental agencies to extend health promotion and prevention activities, extending tertiary health care for diabetics in higher centers at affordable costs, supplying free drugs/insulin to the host nations, ensuring modifications in the existing guidelines for management of disease, and sensitizing health professionals for the management of all the noncommunicable diseases. [2],[3],[4]

To conclude, with no immediate respite from the ongoing civil unrests, the burden faced by the refugee host nations to contain diabetes and other noncommunicable diseases is expected to rise further in future years. Thus, it is high time that all the stakeholders should work in a coordinated manner for ensuring the unbiased delivery of health care services to the refugees.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.

 
  References Top

1.
World Health Organization. Diabetes - Fact Sheet No. 312; 2015. Available from: . [Last accessed on 2016 Jan 08].  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
World Health Organization. Shouldering the Care of Refugees - Lebanon; 2016. Available from: . [Last accessed on 2016 Jan 17].  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
World Health Organization. Surviving the War to Fight Diabetes as a Refugee - Jordan. Available from: . [Last accessed on 2016 Jan 13].  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Holmes D. Chronic disease care crisis for Lebanon′s Syrian refugees. Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol 2015;3:102  Back to cited text no. 4
    



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[Pubmed] | [DOI]



 

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