Previously referred to as “adult-onset diabetes”, type 2 diabetes (T2D) is most commonly associated with adult patients. However, due to continuously climbing obesity rates and decreased levels of physical activity, the prevalence of type 2 diabetes cases in youth is on the rise. Children and adolescents diagnosed with the condition are at risk of developing more severe forms of the disease, putting them at a higher risk of detrimental long-term health complications affecting the heart, kidneys, eyes, and nerves.
Around $1.3 billion of gross domestic product is allotted to diabetes care globally, according to research from the University of Göttingen and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The substantial economic burden of the condition continues to grow, with the average annual cost of care in the U.S. rising 13% between 2012 and 2017. Current analysis of the high expenditure and prevalence suggests the need for policies and programs that prevent and treat diabetes. Improved treatment strategies could lead to notable economic benefits and the redirection of scarce health care resources towards other areas of need.