Govt to announce free glucose test for all

Considering the rising number of diabetes sufferers in the country, Indian government is planning to screen to entire population to aid diabetes detection at the earliest

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'Earlier detection of diabetes will aid disease management and reduce complications'

The Indian government is considering the conduction of a free glucose test for the entire Indian population, as the disease has almost assumed epidemic proportions in the country. The idea behind this nation-wide campaign is to facilitate earlier detection of the disease, thus easing disease management and reducing the risk of complications.

The Science and Technology Minister, Dr Jitendra Singh, said in a recent press conference, "Millions of Indians suffer from diabetes and a plan to arrange for free glucose test for the entire population is under consideration. Screening is crucial as we are number two in the world in terms of diabetes sufferers after China."

Statistics state that India has 67 million diabetes cases while China has about 92 million. It is estimated that by 2030, India will have around 100 million diabetes patients and could surpass even China.

Dr Singh stated that many academic and government institutions in India are focusing on chronic ailments and their cure. He mentioned that research on genetic and stem cells, supported by the Department of Biotechnology, could be an answer to diseases such as diabetes.

The government had recently announced many plans to foster the development of healthcare and to promote health and wellness in the society. These included plans to launch the flagship National Health Assurance Mission which would comprise of assured health packages, including essential drugs and diagnostics.

Under this mission, the poor are likely to get the treatment free of cost and the rest of the population are expected to be covered under an insurance mechanism. A package of preventive and positive health information will also be made available to all citizens, with the health insurance scheme being a built-in feature of the mission.

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