• 7 November 2012
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An aware patient with diabetes lives better and longer

Mr Cyrus Aibara
senior director, diabetes business unit, Sanofi India
The global healthcare industry and medical fraternity is alarmed at the rate at which the diabetic population has been increasing worldwide. Globally, more than 366 million people are living with diabetes and there are far more, who have not made it to the official records.

Data from the International Diabetes Federation shows that 80 percent of people with diabetes live in low-and middle-income countries. The disease is constantly in news as it is a huge and a growing problem in every country. In 2011, India had 61.3 million diabetic subjects and this number is projected to increase to 101.2 million by the year 2030.

One can make out the burden of diabetes in India by just looking at the total size of diabetes market, which is worth 450 crore. Sanofi, as a company is ranked number three in Indian diabetes market, and is positioned a shade behind Abbott and Sun Pharma. In our endeavor to become a 360 degree partner, we deliver the best-in-class complete and integrated solutions to diabetic patients, and we are the only company in diabetes arena to have a balanced portfolio of both oral and insulin medication supported by patient services.

Diabetes has become a major health problem in India. Organizations are working at breakneck speed to get the latest development to the market promising better medications, technologies, and improved insulin delivery devices. The recently launched reusable insulin pen 'ALLSTAR', from Sanofi is a testimony towards the same.

ALLSTAR is a custom made pen for diabetic patients in India. The pen will help improve both insulin initiation and compliance, and bring ease and reassurance to the lives of millions of Indian patients, giving them the convenience of international standards at an affordable price.

More new medication that provides optimal glycemic control by lowering blood glucose level and delay complications is being developed at a rapid pace, than ever before, to address the rapidly increasing diabetes epidemic. Research into medication is targeting less-frequent dosing, minimizing low blood glucose levels, and supporting with weight loss. The treatment regimens are now complemented by a comprehensive approach to diabetes management for the health and well-being of a patient.

In India, a country with limited health resources, if immediate multi-sectoral action is not taken, then diabetes threatens to even impact its economy. Poorly controlled diabetes leads to complications, amplifying disability and mortality rates, and leading to high direct, indirect, and intangible costs. The key challenge that still remains in front of us, in India, is ignorance and unawareness towards the disease. The need is to have more programs that aim to create awareness about diabetes risk and management.

An approach that draws on multiple sectors involving government, pharmaceutical companies, NGOs, health care provider, and diabetes educator will ensure healthy life to people with diabetes. Social media can connect with diabetes, for any support, to share experiences and follow advice and good habits on managing the disease because an aware patient with diabetes lives better and longer.

 About the author
Since April, 2008 Mr Aibara is incharge of the overall diabetes commercial and marketing operations in Sanofi India. Cyrus started his career in sales at Glaxo India in 1989. Subsequently, he moved to Sanofi in 1995 and has grown in the organization since. Cyrus is a biochemistry graduate and has an MBA degree with specialization in marketing from the Pune University.

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