Opin vísindi

Mapping the burden of diabetes in five small countries in Europe and setting the agenda for health policy and strategic action

Mapping the burden of diabetes in five small countries in Europe and setting the agenda for health policy and strategic action


Title: Mapping the burden of diabetes in five small countries in Europe and setting the agenda for health policy and strategic action
Author: Cuschieri, Sarah
Pallari, Elena
Terzic, Natasa
Alkerwi, Ala'a
Sigurðardóttir, Árún Kristín
Date: 2021-03-29
Language: English
Scope:
School: School of Health Sciences
Series: Health Research Policy and Systems; 19(1)
ISSN: 1478-4505
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s12961-020-00665-y
Subject: Sykursýki; Stefnumótun; Smáríki; Type 2 diabetes; Noncommunicable diseases; Healthcare systems; Health policy; Healthcare delivery; Global burden of diseases; Small countries
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11815/2884

Show full item record

Citation:

Cuschieri , S , Pallari , E , Terzic , N , Alkerwi , A & Sigurðardóttir , Á K 2021 , ' Mapping the burden of diabetes in five small countries in Europe and setting the agenda for health policy and strategic action ' , Health Research Policy and Systems , vol. 19 , no. 1 , 43 . https://doi.org/10.1186/s12961-020-00665-y

Abstract:

Background Diabetes is a global epidemic affecting every country. Small countries, however, face distinctive challenges related to their health system governance and their ability to implement effective health systems' reforms. The aim of this research was to perform a comparative assessment of existing diabetes management practices at the population level and explore governmental-related policy for Cyprus, Iceland, Luxembourg, Malta and Montenegro. This is the first time that such an evidence-based review study has been performed in the field of diabetes. The overall purpose was to set the agenda for health policy and inform strategic actions for small countries that can benefit from dealing with the diabetes epidemic at a country level. Methods We collected data and synthesized the evidence on dealing with diabetes for each of the five small European countries according to the (1) epidemiology of diabetes and other related metabolic abnormalities, (2) burden of diabetes status and (3) diabetes registers and national plans. We collected data by contacting Ministry representatives and other bodies in each state, and by searching through publicly available information from the respective Ministry of Health website on strategies and policies. Results Diabetes rates were highest in Cyprus and Malta. National diabetes registers are present in Cyprus and Montenegro, while national diabetes plans and diabetes-specific strategies have been established in Cyprus, Malta and Montenegro. These three countries also offer a free holistic healthcare service to their diabetes population. Conclusions Multistakeholder, national diabetes plans and public health strategies are important means to provide direction on diabetes management and health service provision at the population level. However, political support is not always present, as seen for Iceland. The absence of evidence-based strategies, lack of funding for conducting regular health examination surveys, omission of monitoring practices and capacity scarcity are among the greatest challenges faced by small countries to effectively measure health outcomes. Nevertheless, we identified means of how these can be overcome. For example, the creation of public interdisciplinary repositories enables easily accessible data that can be used for health policy and strategic planning. Health policy-makers, funders and practitioners can consider the use of regular health examination surveys and other tools to effectively manage diabetes at the population level.

Files in this item

This item appears in the following Collection(s)