Interim results of first-ever global survey show people with type 2 diabetes underestimate their cardiovascular risk

Novo NordiskToday the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) presented the interim results of the first ever multi-country online survey on CVD risk awareness and knowledge among people living with type 2 diabetes, indicating low levels of awareness and limited dialogue between patients and healthcare professionals. The global survey - Taking Diabetes to Heart - developed in partnership with Novo Nordisk, runs until March 2018 and is open to all people with type 2 diabetes.

Diabetes currently affects 425 million adults worldwide(1), with most cases being type 2 diabetes. Cardiovascular disease, which includes stroke, coronary heart disease and peripheral artery disease(3), is the leading cause of disability and death in people with type 2 diabetes(1,4).

To date, 943 responses to the survey have been received from 32 countries and interim findings show that:

  • 1 in 3 respondents living with type 2 diabetes consider their risk of CVD to be low2
  • 26% of respondents had either never learned about CVD or received information on CVD several years following their type 2 diabetes diagnosis2
  • 1 in 6 respondents had never discussed their type 2 diabetes and CVD risk with a healthcare professional2
"The interim results of Taking Diabetes to Heart reiterate the importance of raising awareness of the association between type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease to promote prevention, timely diagnosis and appropriate treatment to help reduce the current burden that the two conditions represent," said Dr Shaukat Sadikot, outgoing IDF President. "With the world facing an increase in the prevalence of type 2 diabetes, better understanding the link between these conditions is needed more than ever."

Taking Diabetes to Heart - www.idf.org/takingdiabetes2heart/survey - aims to gather insights on current gaps in education and CVD risk behaviour among people with type 2 diabetes, and to put in place advocacy and patient support strategies and tactics to improve health and wellbeing among populations.

"Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of disability and death among people living with type 2 diabetes. Too few individuals with diabetes are being informed by healthcare professionals of their cardiovascular risk and the impact that risk may have on their longevity and quality of life," said Alan Moses, senior vice president and chief medical officer of Novo Nordisk. "We encourage more people in the diabetes community to complete the Taking Diabetes to Heart survey to strengthen the global findings that will inform future efforts to help improve outcomes."

The results of Taking Diabetes to Heart will serve to define the actions that are required to improve the health outcomes of people with type 2 diabetes. The initiative will culminate in a comprehensive report with country-specific results and resources to help support knowledge and awareness of CVD among people with type 2 diabetes around the world.

About the International Diabetes Federation

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) is an umbrella organisation of over 230 national diabetes associations in 165 countries and territories. It represents the interests of the growing number of people with diabetes and those at risk. The Federation has been leading the global diabetes community since 1950. The Federation's activities aim to influence policy, increase public awareness and encourage health improvement, promote the exchange of high-quality information about diabetes, and provide education for people with diabetes and their healthcare providers. IDF is associated with the Department of Public Information of the United Nations and is in official relations with the World Health Organization (WHO).

Taking Diabetes to Heart

Taking Diabetes to Heart - www.idf.org/takingdiabetes2heart - consists of an online survey available in multiple languages, including Arabic, Bulgarian, Chinese, Danish, Dutch, English, French, Filipino, Finnish, German, Hindi, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swahili and Vietnamese. The survey will remain online until March 2018. Results from the survey will be used to inform policy and decision-making around this common and serious complication of diabetes.(2,3)

About Novo Nordisk

Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company with more than 90 years of innovation and leadership in diabetes care. This heritage has given us experience and capabilities that also enable us to help people defeat other serious chronic conditions: haemophilia, growth disorders and obesity. Headquartered in Denmark, Novo Nordisk employs approximately 41,400 people in 77 countries and markets its products in more than 165 countries.

1. International Diabetes Federation. IDF Diabetes Atlas, 8th Edition. Brussels, Belgium: International Diabetes Federation, 2017. Available at: www.diabetesatlas.org
2. International Diabetes Federation, 2017. Taking Diabetes to Heart - Global IDF survey on CVD risk awareness among people with diabetes. Available at: www.idf.org/takingdiabetes2heart
3. International Diabetes Federation. Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease. Brussels, Belgium: International Diabetes Federation, 2016. Available at: www.idf.org/cvd
4. World Health Organization, editor. Global health risks: mortality and burden of disease attributable to selected major risks. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2009. 62p.

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