With the exception of Type 1 diabetes, the majority of diabetes cases are preventable. Major advances in care coupled with healthy lifestyles can ensure a higher quality of life for people diagnosed early with diabetes. To improve prevention and treatment and reduce escalating healthcare costs, some EU Member States have introduced national plans or guidelines aimed at stemming the tide of diabetes. The European Union has a vital role to play in encouraging and facilitating the sharing of European best practices in prevention, diagnosis and treatment of diabetes.
The EU has been supporting diabetes research for several years through its Research Framework Programmes. Under the Fifth Framework Programme, which ran from 1998 to 2002, it invested about €40 million in 19 projects in this field. The Sixth Framework Programme (2002-2006) allocates €2.225 billion to health research, including diabetes, for which the Commission has already invested about €90 million in shared-cost research projects performed by research centres, universities and industry.
Be safe, not sorry
It is estimated that, in certain EU Member States, as many as 50% of cases of diabetes remain undiagnosed. Type 2 diabetes in particular may go unnoticed for years, as the early symptoms are typically mild and sporadic. However, severe complications can result from unnoticed diabetes, including renal failure, and coronary heart disease. If you think you may have some of the symptoms described in this leaflet, consult your doctor.