% of time spent by people with diabetes with a medical professional in a year

If you have been to a diabetes conference in the past few years, there’s a good chance that you have seen this slide as part of a presentation.

This was a slide I first put together a few years ago, to convey a “back of the envelope” calculation I had done that essentially amounted to the percentage of time that a person with diabetes spends in the company of a medical professional in the course of a year. My estimate had all along been 0.1%. Today, I took the time to validate this looking for hard data from CDC, the American Journal of Managed Care, and other reputable sources, to REALLY back this finding.

I am sad to report that I was wrong: the percentage is even lower! :(

So this is what I searched:

Now, the math for the year 2010:

  • Minutes in a year = 24 x 60 x 365 = 525,600
  • Minutes in a year x number of people with diabetes, PWD = 10,932,480,000,000 (10.9 trillion)
  • Minutes in a year spent by PWD in visits to physician offices, hospital outpatient and emergency departments = 37.3 million x 20.7 minutes = 772,110,000
  • Percentage of a year’s time spent by PWD in visits to physician offices, hospital outpatient and emergency departments = 0.00007062532929 = 0.007%!

So I have been GROSSLY overestimating the number all these years! :(

What does this mean?
99.993% of the time, a person with diabetes is self-managing their condition on their own. Think about it… most people would call that nearly 100% of the time.

Everybody Talks: a #diabetes podcast for all types

Most of the time diabetes discussion focuses strongly on a single type: type 1 or type 2. But as best as I know, this is the only podcast where the voice of type 1 and type 2 diabetes is captured and shared in response to a variety of issues that everyone with diabetes is affected by.

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Why I am excited about #WDC2015 World Diabetes Congress?

For a little over a year, I have been working with the Programme Committee in charge of putting together the World Diabetes Congress, as Deputy Lead for the “Living With Diabetes” track of the event, scheduled to take place in Vancouver, BC, Nov. 30 – Dec. 4, 2015.

Please join us for this event that brings together leadership in diabetes advocacy, science, education, and more from all over the world every two years.