JA-CHRODIS Policy brief on National Diabetes Plans

The Joint Action CHRODIS (JA-CHRODIS) provides evidence to build comprehensive strategies to tackle diabetes and chronic diseases. On the occasion of World Health Day, JA-CHRODIS launches policy brief that helps identify the key enablers and barriers to the development, implementation and sustainability of national diabetes plans (NDPs) in Europe.
(EMSA-Europe, 8th April 2016)

The policy brief aims to support countries’ efforts to build a successful and comprehensive strategy for the prevention and the management of diabetes and, more broadly, chronic diseases. It draws on a mapping of NDPs in Europe and intends to facilitate the exchange of good practices.

Although countries in Europe have made progress towards developing a systematic policy response to the diabetes burden, overall the investment in and implementation of comprehensive strategies for the prevention and care of diabetes has varied, while the burden of diabetes has kept increasing and thus poses important challenges to individuals and health systems.

The most recent figures by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) suggest that in 2015 415 million people were living with diabetes globally1. Diabetes is associated with a high individual, social and economic burden. In the European Region diabetes alone was estimated to be responsible for 9% of the total health expenditure[1].

The policy brief identified a range of factors that appear to facilitate the development, implementation and sustainability of national diabetes plans. These include national (or regional) leadership, multiple stakeholder involvement, patient representation in plan development and implementation, and dedicated resources, among others.

The identified key challenges include the need for countries to move towards a more comprehensive, inter-sectoral approach to diabetes, and to put in place effective mechanisms for research and the implementation, monitoring and evaluation of NDPs. It would allow countries to learn from experience and apply their knowledge to chronic diseases.

“A better understanding of the key enablers and barriers is of utmost importance to support countries’ efforts to build a successful response to diabetes at the national level”, said Dr Jelka Zaletel from the National Institute of Public Health of Slovenia (NIJZ). “However it is crucial to obtain commitment at the highest political levels towards the prevention and control of diabetes and, more broadly, chronic diseases, and to ensure that these are translated into action”, said Marina Maggini from the Italian Health Institute (ISS).

The policy brief was coordinated on behalf of JA-CHRODIS by the NIJZ and the ISS. It is being launched on World Health Day 2016 which focuses on diabetes and aims to trigger specific, effective and affordable actions to tackle diabetes. The Policy Brief can be found here.

[1]International Diabetes Federation. IDF Diabetes Atlas, 7th Ed. Brussels, Belgium: International
Diabetes Federation, 2015. http://www.diabetesatlas.org
* This press release arises from the Joint Action addressing chronic diseases and healthy ageing across the life cycle (JA-CHRODIS) which has received funding from the European Union, under the framework of the Health Programme (2008-2013).

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