#WeWontRest in the fight against diabetesRight from diagnosis diabetes is relentless, every day, every week, for life. Are my sugars too high? Too low?  What if I get a hypo, will I be able to get up in the morning? Do the people around me know what to do? You can’t have a holiday from diabetes, even take a break from the constant battle to proactively manage your condition, keep healthy and active. How you manage your diabetes today, will have an impact on your long-term health: over time diabetes can affect blood vessels, leading to a heart attack or stroke and damage to other organs. How can I avoid these complications? Will it affect my ability to work? My eyesight? Will I lose a limb? Will I live long enough to see my grandchildren go to school?

Diagnosis for type 2 diabetes is often in later life, but its impact can be devastating, with the elevated risk of complications and impact on quality of life weighing heavily on the minds of patients. Nobody should live with type 2 diabetes without appropriate treatment, yet many people have type 2 diabetes without realizing it. Being diagnosed early and controlling your blood sugar levels, reduces your risk of other health problems. The good thing is, you can do something about it. As a person with diabetes, you can proactively manage your disease. Adherence to diet and exercise and  the most appropriate treatment is essential.

Is Type 2 Diabetes my fault? Because of its connection with diet and exercise, Type 2 diabetes is viewed by many as a self-inflicted disease. Although diet and lifestyle are risk factors, it is important to recognise that are other causes, including age, race, and family genetics, and dispel the myth that overweight and unhealthy lifestyle behaviours are the only causal factors.

For Type 1 diabetes, diagnosis is often during childhood meaning all those worries are carried by parents with the added burden of trying to teach, often very young, children about managing their diabetes, sugar intake, what to do in an emergency, blood tests and regular injections. And that often means educating teachers, class room assistants, coaches, carers and family members too.

And that’s why, while diabetes never gives up, neither will we. As an industry we are committed to the fight against diabetes, to finding treatments and cures, to improving the lives of people living with diabetes across Europe.

Diabetes: a rising epidemic
The diabetes pandemic is one of the biggest health and socio-economic challenges of our time.
Nearly 1 out of 10 people in Europe have diabetes, amounting to around 60 million people[1]. By 2045 this number is expected to increase by 22% to 81 million people[2]. For people living with diabetes, beyond the relentless self-management of their condition, the main impacts are the serious adverse complications associated with the disease. For example, people with type-2 diabetes have a 2-3 times greater risk of heart failure, an increased risk of having a heart attack or stroke, with more than half dying of CV-related events[3], and are exposed to higher risk of cognitive function alteration. Complications are the main driver of diabetes-related costs in our healthcare systems, in fact 75% of costs associated with treating these preventable complications[4].
We are ambitious about achieving better healthcare for people living with diabetes. It will take research, collaboration and a continued commitment to innovation, but #WeWontRest until everyone with diabetes receives the best care and the best possible treatment.
Science and innovation are at the heart of advancing diabetes research and clinical care. Over the last 40 years, the quality of life of people living with diabetes has improved thanks to a series of advances that have transformed the way people manage their disease. We will continue to work to improve patients’ quality of life and health.
However, there are significant challenges for healthcare systems in managing chronic, complex, and growing diseases like diabetes. Diabetes absorbs 9% of total health expenditure in the European Union and is projected to rise by 12% over the next 25 years[5]. Access to current treatment options is highly variable throughout Europe, as are the ways in which healthcare systems provide diabetes care. Optimal use of resources to ensure people with diabetes achieve the best possible outcomes should be a key area in diabetes care delivery.
This is why a number of EFPIA member companies have come together in the EFPIA Diabetes Platform. The Platform’s aim is simple: 

To be an active partner in the fight against diabetes, improving the lives of everyone affected by the disease

We will do this by:

Improving diabetes diagnosis and management and focusing on delivering better healthcare for patients living with diabetes

The EFPIA Diabetes Platform aims to improve the lives of everyone affected by diabetes.  Over the coming months we will continue to work with stakeholders across the research and health community to achieve this goal. It means looking at how to improve diabetes management and to reduce complications. More specifically, the group aims are:
  • Raising the recognition of the value of innovation in diabetes
  • Improving health outcomes in diabetes management
  • Contributing to the sustainability of financing diabetes management for the future
We remain ambitious about the future for people living with diabetes. Through research, better management and collaboration, #WeWontRest until diabetes is defeated.

Define, track, measure and improve - How health data and registries can help improve health outcomes for people with diabetes
remove add

Measuring health outcomes is an essential tool in understanding their variation; identifying areas for improvement and assessing the benefits and impacts of clinical practice and care pathways; guiding public health policies and interventions and facilitating integrated care pathways. Registries play a significant role in collecting, measuring and reporting the health data that can inform these processes. Given the complex nature of managing chronic diseases such as diabetes, registries and health data can play an essential role in catalysing an evidence-based approach to disease management.

A roundtable meeting was convened in Stockholm, Sweden, on 14 June 2019. This was organised by EFPIA Diabetes Platform and LIF Sweden, and the purpose was to focus on the use of health data and registries, in particular the Swedish National Diabetes Register (NDR). The event was part of a wider effort by the EFPIA Diabetes Platform to accelerate the shift towards outcome-based care in diabetes. It was the first of three events in the coming months, which aim at informing a policy paper to be published in 2019. Given the fundamental role that registries and health data could play in shaping the future of diabetes care and management, the Stockholm roundtable was a fitting place to start.

You can find here a report from the roundtable discussion. 

Rethinking health systems - Integrated care and empowerment of primary care for people with diabetes
remove add

Making the transition from existing models of care poses challenges for health systems, healthcare providers and patients alike. For diabetes care, the degree of difficulty in successfully managing this chronic disease varies from one patient to another. Facilitating integrated care pathways becomes an essential tool in delivering effective healthcare to diabetes patients. But how can healthcare systems consider different patient profiles and perspectives when designing care? What tools and technologies are needed to enhance the communication between providers on one side and between providers and patients on the other side? How can we align care coordination efforts among healthcare providers?

In order to explore these questions and build consensus on possible policy solutions, EFPIA, in collaboration with Primary Care Diabetes Europe (PCDE), convened a multi-stakeholder roundtable to share different stakeholder perspectives on the barriers and opportunities of integrated care empowerment of primary care for people with diabetes.

You can find here a report from the roundtable discussion. 

Enabling self-efficacy through digital technologies and innovative therapies
remove add

Patients have the tools to measure and record data and, increasingly, have access to innovative technologies and therapies that give them an active role in their care. This offers unprecedented opportunities for secondary prevention and behavioural changes and can spare people with diabetes from suffering complications that result from poor glucose control. But which digital health interventions could be most beneficial for people with diabetes? How can data sharing improve outcomes, reduce health system costs and support up-take of innovative approaches to diabetes management and care? What are the barriers that need to be overcome in order to benefit from innovative technologies and therapies?

In order to explore these questions and build consensus on possible policy solutions, EFPIA and vfa convened a multi-stakeholder roundtable in Berlin on 13 September 2019. The purpose was to share different stakeholder perspectives on the barriers and opportunities of digital tools and innovative therapies and to explore the value of innovation in improving diabetes care and outcomes.

You can find here a report from the roundtable discussion.

[1] IDF Diabetes Atlas Eight Edition, International Diabetes Federation 2017
[2] IDF Diabetes Atlas Eight Edition, International Diabetes Federation 2017
[3] Nwaneri C, Cooper H, Bowen-Jones D. Mortality in type 2 diabetes mellitus: magnitude of the evidence from a systematic review and meta-analysis. The British Journal of
Diabetes & Vascular Disease. 2013;13(4):192-207 & Morrish NJ, et al. Mortality and causes of death in the WHO Multinational Study of Vascular Disease in Diabetes.
Diabetologia. 2001;44 Suppl 2:S14-21
[4] Martin S, et al. Exp Clin Endocrinol Diabetes. 2007;115:495-501.
[5] Solomon et al. Diabetes Care 2017; 40: 412-418