Background: At the 75th World Health Assembly (WHA) today, countries will be discussing draft recommendations to strengthen and monitor diabetes responses within national non-communicable disease programmes, including potential targets. In May 2021, during the centenary year of the discovery of insulin, World Health Organization (WHO) member states passed a resolution on “Reducing the burden of non-communicable diseases through strengthening prevention and control of diabetes” at the 74th WHA. Within the resolution were specific appeals on access to insulin, directed at both member states and the WHO.
In January 2022, WHO proposed the following global targets to the WHO Executive Board:
- 80% of people with diabetes are diagnosed (this includes all types of diabetes)
- 80% of people with diagnosed diabetes have good control of glycaemia
- 80% of people with diagnosed diabetes have good control of blood pressure
- 60% of people with diabetes of 40 years or older receive statins
- 100% of people with type 1 diabetes have access to affordable insulin treatment (including devices for insulin delivery, such as syringes and needles) and blood glucose self-monitoring (the 'bundle')
These potential targets will be put forward for consideration by member states today at the WHA. For background on this, please see a new briefing document by MSF and Santé Diabète that gives a snapshot of the situations in Kenya, South Africa and Mali with regard to targets for diabetes care.
Quote from Dr Helen Bygrave, Chronic Diseases Advisor for MSF’s Access Campaign:
“We strongly support setting global targets for response to diabetes, but achieving them will mean investing in monitoring and surveillance systems. In countries where MSF works, we have witnessed the challenges faced by people with diabetes receiving care in the public health system, who often don’t have access to the bundle of insulin, medical supplies required to inject it, and tools to monitor their blood glucose levels. It is imperative that countries consider this ‘diabetes bundle’ and its price, when forecasting, budgeting and procuring.”