RiteMED, the no.1 uni-branded line of medicine in the country, and iGAN ng Pilipinas Foundation, Inc, a non-profit organization founded by award-winning broadcast journalist Arnold Clavio in 2001, formally launched its partnership for the development and implementation of community-based program that will increase awareness of Type 1 diabetes.
The partnership intends to provide hope most especially to diabetic children who belong to the underserved communities in the country. It is also working in collaboration with C.H.I.L.D. Foundation, the prime supporter of the UP-PGH Department of Pediatrics to support the “Adopt a Diabetic Child” Program of the Section of Endocrinology and Metabolism.
“For the past four years, the foundation has been supporting the ‘Adopt-a-Child with Diabetes’ program and we are happy that we have successfully addressed the needs of the children on a sustainable basis. As we embark on this partnership, we hope to be able to extend our assistance to more children out there who are also afflicted with the disease,” says Clavio who was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in 2004.
“Since RiteMED started in the business, not only has it been committed to producing quality and affordable medicine accessible to more Filipinos but it has also pledged to take part in building a healthier country through its medical service programs and information campaigns. We welcome this partnership as it gives us the opportunity to fulfill those commitments,” says Nick A. Salud, general manager of RiteMED.
Formerly known as juvenile diabetes, Type 1 diabetes is a chronic condition in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin, a hormone needed to allow glucose or sugar to enter cells to produce energy. Various factors may contribute to Type 1 diabetes including genetics and exposure to certain environmental triggers including viruses. Although it typically appears in children or adolescents, it can also develop in adults.
Unlike Type 2 diabetes which is a lifestyle-related disease resulting to insulin-resistance, Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease. Its major symptoms include weight loss despite increased appetite, excessive thirst, and frequent urination. Children with Type 1 diabetes mellitus need insulin therapy for survival and wellbeing.
“One of the telltale signs that your child may have Type 1 diabetes is habitual bedwetting despite being toilet-trained. That is not normal and it should be a cause for alarm,” warns Dr. Sioksoan Chan-Cua, Associate Professor and Chief of the Endocrinology Section, Department of Pediatrics, UP-PGH.
There are tests to diagnose Type 1 diabetes mellitus including fasting blood glucose, random blood glucose and glycated hemoglobin (A1C) Test. HbA1c shows a person’s average sugar level for the past few months and it measures the percentage of blood sugar attached to the hemoglobin in the system. A percentage between 5.7 and 6.4 indicates that a person is at risk for Type 1 diabetes. A level of 6.5 percent or higher is considered diabetic. This test can also be used to show how well a person with diabetes is controlling his or his sugars.
“Type 1 can be managed through proper diet, exercise, and insulin which is a necessity for many patients. Insulin is usually administered by injection, using a syringe or a pen, but some people now use an insulin pump,” says Dr. Cua.
Uncontrolled type-1 diabetes can affect major organs in the body including heart, blood vessels, nerves, eyes, and kidneys. These long-term complications develop gradually over the years and may be disabling or even life threatening, which is why early detection is important. With appropriate care and treatment and better understanding of disease management, patients can live a long life.
iGAN Foundation is currently supporting 10 patients under the ‘Adopt a Diabetic Child’ Program.
RiteMED recently launched Insulyf, an insulin drug for Type 1 diabetes. To encourage patient compliance, Insulyf is priced significantly lower than other brands.
For more information, log on to the Facebook page of iGAN foundation, Philippines, http://www.childfoundationinc.org.ph/ and http://www.ritemed.ph/.