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For better diabetes care, make a change

For better diabetes care, make a change

Dr. Jimmy B. Aragon
Endocrinologist, Makati Medical Center

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF), an umbrella organization of over 230 national diabetes associations, projected that by 2030, the number of adults with diabetes in the Philippines will further rise to almost 5.3 million people and an estimated 7.2 million people by 2045. 

Diabetes is a serious chronic health condition that affects how the body turns food into energy because of insulin deficiency or resistance. One in every 14 Filipinos lives with the disease. Many face substantial barriers to insulin and diabetes care such as health financing issues and fragmented referral systems from primary care to specialized care units. If mismanaged, major complications such as eye problems (retinopathy), nerve damage (neuropathy), kidney issues, and heart conditions may arise. These outcomes are costly, and sometimes even fatal. 

Diabetes knows no age, population, nor lifestyle. The condition can impact the development of younger children, adults, pregnant women, and the elderly. Diabetes can get triggered by various reasons such as genetic disposition, viral infection, and lifestyle.

Through the years, diabetes has consistently landed among the top ten causes of death in the Philippines. This makes better diabetes control and management practices more important now than ever.  

Your Healthcare Team starts with You

Proper management can help anyone with diabetes feel better today and in the days to come. Aside from consulting with medical professionals to come up with specialized nutrition and physical activity plans, monitoring one’s glucose levels is one of many things individuals with diabetes can do to stay on top of their conditions. 

Blood glucose monitoring is a tried and tested way to help patients measure their blood sugar levels. The latest technologies that provide more comprehensive and up-to-date information are now available in the market. Continuous Glucose Monitoring (CGM) technology such as the Abbott FreeStyle Libre System helps Filipinos with diabetes measure their complete glucose profile in just one painless scan. More than 4,000,000 patients living with diabetes in 60 countries have already tried this new technology to measure their glucose levels in real-time. Additionally, real-world data shows that CGM technology helps deliver positive health outcomes such as reducing average glucose levels by 1.2%-1.4%.

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How CGM helps patients take control

CGM measures glucose levels using a reader and sensor. Patients living with diabetes can check their current glucose profile through a sensor on the back of their upper arm with a handheld reader to check their glucose levels anytime and anywhere through an easy, one-second scan. CGM data makes it possible for Filipinos to know their glucose data in real-time. This helps them make more informed decisions surrounding what to eat, what physical activities can be done, and if any further adjustments to their management plans might be needed. 

This is the next generation of diabetes care. Real-time data empowers Filipinos with diabetes to truly take the reins in managing their conditions. Alongside CGM technology, cloud-based applications such as LibreView can also help doctors monitor their patient’s glucose levels – encouraging collaborative and personalized approaches to care. 

Making the shift to better diabetes care

Diabetes care can be costly. However, the rise of CGM technology can help make management more cost-efficient. By knowing one’s glucose levels in real-time, diabetes care can become more proactive and less reactionary. Through proper glucose control, it becomes easier for people with the disease not only to stay out of the hospital for serious complications but also to stay in better control of their health for now and in the future as well.

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