Mena region 'spending $5.5bn on diabetes'
Dubai, February 12, 2012
Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region accounts for about 26.6 million diabetics and the region spends $5.5 billion annually on diabetes, an expert said.
Six countries in the region - the UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, Kuwait, Oman and Saudi Arabia -- are among the top 10 globally with the highest prevalence of diabetes, said Doaa Said, divisional director of healthcare events at IQPC, organiser of the Dubai Diabetes Summit.
The region's spending on diabetes accounts for 14 percent of its total health care budget and the expenditure averages as high as almost $3,000 per person. Health ministries in the region are working to improve these figures by providing accessible screening opportunities and training more doctors and nurses, he said.
'In recent years, UAE has seen a quick increase in the number of diabetic patients, it is estimated that 20 per cent of our population are diabetic. Nowadays, UAE is ranked the 2nd highest worldwide for diabetes prevalence,' said Doaa Said. 'Therefore, it is important to gather the policy makers with the leading diabetes experts to develop effective strategies to control the rise in diabetes in our country,' added Said.
Recognising the importance of the prevention and management of diabetes in the Mena region, IQPC conferences will be hosting the summit in the UAE, which will be gathering the leading experts from international health organisations, national health authorities, local diabetic associations and leading healthcare professionals to work together and create a network of committed key opinion leaders to exchange their knowledge and engage all the stakeholders to fight this epidemic.
The summit, to be held in Dubai from March 18-21, 2012 will reveal the latest technologies to researchers, clinicians and general practitioners in diabetes. Key opinion leaders will present a rich scientific programme on topics such as novel therapies in treatment of Type II diabetes, updates on prevention strategies to control the rise in diabetes, improving glycemic control via non-medical interventions, innovative approaches to managing the complications of diabetes and more.
The summit will host more than 20 expert speakers from the most important health authorities, hospitals and universities across the world, experts such as Dr Mahmoud Fikry, assistant undersecretary for health policies and affairs, Ministry of Health, UAE; Dr Oliver Harrison, director, public health and policy, Health Authority Abu Dhabi; Dr Abdullah Al-Hamaq, executive director, Qatar Diabetes Association; Prof Peter Schwarz, researcher, University of Dresden, Germany; Professor Devaka Fernando, consultant endocrinologist, head of the Department of Diabetes and Endocrinology, Sherwood Forest Hospitals Foundation Trust, UK,will be providing their insights about the prevention and management of diabetes. - TradeArabia News Service