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Indian J Endocrinol Metab. 2014 Jan;18(1):7-12. doi: 10.4103/2230-8210.126521.

National health programs in the field of endocrinology and metabolism - Miles to go.

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  • 1Department of Community Medicine, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Porur, Tamil Nadu, India.
  • 2Department of Endocrinology and Diabetes, Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Porur, Tamil Nadu, India.
  • 3Tamil Nadu Health Systems Project, Directorate of Public Health, Government of Tamil Nadu, Tamil Nadu, India.


The endocrine and metabolic diseases of childhood obesity, diabetes mellitus, hypertension, iodine deficiency disorders, vitamin D deficiency, and osteoporosis are major public health problems. Different programs including National Program for Prevention and Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases, and Stroke address these problems although some are yet to be addressed. National surveys have shown high prevalence of these disorders and their risk factors. Most of the programs aim at awareness raising, lifestyle modification, (primary prevention) and screening (secondary prevention) for the disease conditions as these are proven to be cost-effective compared to late diagnosis and treatment of various complications. Urgent concerted full scale implementation of these programs with good coordination under the umbrella of National Rural Health Mission is the need of the moment. The referral system needs strengthening as are the secondary and tertiary levels of health care. Due attention is to be given for implementation of these programs in the urban areas, as the prevalence of these conditions is almost equal or even higher among urban poor people where primary and secondary prevention measures are scarcely available and treatment costs are sky-high.


Diabetes; endocrinology; iodine deficiency disorders; national programs; surveillance

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