Diabetes is one of the most common non-communicable diseases and one which affects 350 million people worldwide. India is called the ‘Diabetes Capital’ with a quarter of the world’s diabetes cases found here. Diabetes is fast gaining the status of a potential epidemic in India with more than 62 million diabetic individuals currently diagnosed with the disease, of which, about 18 million belong to the poor section of society. Diabetes, in India, has transcended from affluent people to the poorer sections of society due to various aspects such as food insecurity, illiteracy, poverty and poor health. It is a chronic, debilitating and costly disease which leads to severe complications for the patient, increases burden on families and impedes development of the society.
HPPI partners with both government and private partners to implement its Diabetes Programme through its Community Development Projects. Prevention of diabetes through identification of high risk subjects and early intervention in the form of health education is the core of our diabetes program. Aim is to fight this voracious disease by creating awareness and strengthening prevention and control programs.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 90 percent of diabetics around the world suffer from type 2 diabetes. Type 2 Diabetes is accentuated mostly by sedentary life-style and irregular and unfavourable dietary habits, hence it is possible to reduce the impact of diabetes by bringing its risk factors under control through community awareness and BCC (Behaviour Change Communication).
The Diabetes Community Care and Support Project of HPPI are implemented in 74 villages in Mandore block of Jodhpur district, Rajasthan with the support of Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) since December 2012. The project primarily aims to reduce risky life-style and habits of the local people through door-to-door screening of the major risk factors, and imparting diabetes education at the near-by public health facilities and providing home-based care to the diabetes-affected people. Additionally, HPPI promotes vegetable gardens and trains people in maintenance of vegetable gardens to ensure adequate and accessible nutritional supplementation for the diabetic patients.
The project has reached more than 150,000 people through its door-to-door diabetes campaign, and through its collaboration with Non Communicable Diseases Cell (NCD) in Jodhpur 115,300 people have been successfully tested. More than 4,200 diabetes cases have been detected (with a prevalence of 7.3% in the age group 45+), and brought under the project’s home-based diabetic care program. Two hundred and fifty families have established nutrition gardens at the household level which are giving them access to organically grown, fresh vegetables without additional cost.
Throughout its implementation, the project has worked together with ASHA workers and community volunteers who now have also built their capacity regarding how to support people in prevention and treatment of diabetes.