THE EADSG DIFFERENCE In recent years, diabetes has reached epidemic proportions, affecting almost 14 million men, women, and children in Sub-Saharan Africa. It is one of the most heavily researched diseases of our time, yet it remains an incurable, progressive illness, with devastating complications such as blindness, neuropathy, and cardiovascular disorders. The past 10 years, however, have seen a revolution in diabetes care that will continue well into the 21st century. New pharmacological interventions, including new oral therapies and insulin formulations, noninvasive glucose monitors, and transplant procedures have recently become available or are just on the horizon, offering hope for sustainable treatment. With the advent of these therapeutic strategies, the East African Diabetes Study Group (EADSG) was launched in 2011 to provide educational programs and conduct research to further expand our knowledge of this debilitating illness and its treatment. EADSG will take action to reduce the devastating complications of diabetes mellitus. Its plan of action emphasizes treating diabetes to reach and maintain target levels of glucose, blood pressure, and lipids. EADSG is committed to excellence in education, research, and treatment of diabetes. EADSG welcomes to all endocrinologists, diabetologists, primary care physicians, diabetes educators, and other health care professionals who work with diabetes patients with a nominal Membership Fee of USD50 annually.
EDUCATION EADSG is dedicated to providing health care professionals with valuable educational initiatives about diabetes care and management. In addition to sponsoring continuing medical education seminars and symposia, EADSG hopes to develop and deliver educational products (such as monographs, diabetes newsletters, a diabetes handbook, diabetes slides, lecture kits, and journal supplements) on the risks and opportunities for people with diabetes.
RESEARCH Landmark studies show that maintaining tight glycemic control reduces the risk of serious, disabling, or fatal complications, such as blindness, kidney failure, heart disease, and amputations. EADSG encourages and supports research into the pathophysiology of diabetes as well as current and future therapies for diabetes.
ACTIVITIES EADSG started as small East African Diabetes Scientific Meetings and has been involved in developing educational programs to help physicians improve patient care:
- Sponsoring continuing medical education (CME) programs in accordance with the guidelines of the Medical Councils of East Africa.
- Working with physicians and other health care providers to develop tools and techniques to help them improve the day-to-day care of their patients Pursuing opportunities to support research activities at several levels.
FOCUS AREA PRIORITY FOR EADSG
AWARENESS Raising awareness of the prevalence and seriousness of all types of diabetes mellitus, the risk factors for developing diabetes mellitus and the personal, social and economic implications of the diabetes epidemic.
PREVENTION Prevention of diabetes mellitus by developing healthier individuals and communities, especially children; promoting physical activity, healthy eating and builtenvironments that encourage activity.
DETECTION Early detection of people at high risk of diabetes and those who have undiagnosed diabetes to facilitate targeted early intervention strategies.
MANAGEMENT Best practice management which requires increasing affordability and access to health care teams, professionals and services for all people with all types of diabetes mellitus as an integral component of self-management.
CURE Increased funding for and greater priority given to diabetes research for all types of diabetes mellitus and across the spectrum of the disease with the ultimate aim of one day finding a cure. In pursuing these priorities, the EADSG is focusing on three key strategies:
- Lead and deliver national activities in East Africa and beyond
- Cooperate with other East Africa Community diabetes organizations and other international organizations to share knowledge and resources to add value for people with diabetes
- Assess and improve its performance to be a leading national not-for-profit health organization.