Chief Justice N.V. Ramana on Sunday praised the Indian scientists and researchers for developing Covid vaccine within a few months and also emphasized that it is essential for the state to provide support and subsidy for diabetic care.
Speaking at the Ahuja Bajaj Symposium on Diabetes, Justice Ramana said: “I felt so happy when Indian scientists and researchers came up with a Covid vaccine within a few months, but unfortunately we are nowhere near to finding a permanent cure for diabetes, which is an ancient disease. My only wish is that a cure is found.”
The Chief Justice said: “We must look at the impact of diabetes over the Indian healthcare system. Covid-19 has already exposed the fragility of our overburdened healthcare system. The major issue associated with the disease is that it attacks every organ of the body.”
Justice Ramana said the health of the nation and its citizens is paramount, and naturally is a precondition to achieving the developmental aspirations we have set for ourselves.
He said diabetes is an enemy of the poor man and also an expensive disease — a recurring financial burden for the lifetime of the patient. “The human cost is immense. The economic cost to the nation is immeasurable. Therefore, it is essential that the State provides support and subsidy for diabetic care. The government also needs to train and introduce more health care professionals to deal with this problem”, said Justice Ramana. He added that diabetes is a very depressing disease, the patient lives every minute and every day of his life worrying about how to control blood sugar levels. “Your social life is curtailed and your whole world revolves around controlling blood sugar…,” he added.
Justice Ramana also shared his experience with the disease and mentioned he is currently under able care of Dr. Anoop Mishra. He said: “Maybe, if I had chosen some other profession other than this stressful legal profession, I would have saved Dr. Mishra the trouble of treating me.”
Elaborating on the myth that it is a rich man’s disease, Justice Ramana said: “In the last two decades, a paradigm shift has been seen, with respect to the number of affected persons — from urban to rural areas. Due to lack of access to affordable health care and awareness, most of the cases go undetected for the longest amount of time.”
Justice Ramana said it took the Covid pandemic to show the deadly impact of diabetes, as it was one of the main comorbidities which claimed millions of lives across the globe.
Citing abundant western literature on diabetes, Justice Ramana said, “It is imperative to conduct India-specific studies targeting the Indian population which shall help in the development of appropriate treatment protocols…I believe that the most important tool to defeat the disease is stress management and discipline in our diet and fitness regime”. He added that unfortunately, “We are still unable to standardize permissible blood sugar levels. There is a lot of confusion due to different standards applied in different countries during different times.”