Merck Announces Collaboration with the American Diabetes Association to Educate Adults with Diabetes About Increased Risk for Serious Diseases like Pneumococcal Pneumonia

March 26, 2015

The collaboration aims to educate adults with diabetes about their increased risk for potentially serious health problems, including pneumococcal pneumonia, influenza, and hepatitis B.

PRESS RELEASE

KENILWORTH, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Merck (NYSE:MRK), known as MSD outside of the United States and Canada, today announced a collaboration with the American Diabetes Association (ADA). The collaboration aims to educate adults with diabetes about their increased risk for potentially serious health problems, including pneumococcal pneumonia, influenza (flu) and hepatitis B, making it important for people with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes to talk to their health care professional (HCP) about these diseases.

“It is important for health care providers to help their diabetic patients understand their increased risk for infections, and to discuss the best approach to managing this increased risk. For example, adults with diabetes are three times more likely to develop pneumococcal pneumonia compared to adults without diabetes,” said Mel Kohn, M.D., M.P.H., medical director, Merck. “There is therefore a need to increase conversations by HCPs on the levels of risk for these infections in this patient population.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 29.1 million people, or 9.3%, of the U.S. population have diabetes (it is estimated that of this population, 21 million people are diagnosed and 8.1 million people remain undiagnosed). Each year, 1.7 million new cases of diabetes are diagnosed in people aged 20 years and older.

The ADA’s Professional Practice Committee’s yearly Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes notes that ongoing patient self-management education and support are critical to preventing acute complications, and reducing the risk of long-term complications. The Committee also notes that good communication with HCPs can help people with diabetes feel in control and respond to the challenges that come with the disease.

“Our work with Merck will help disseminate the very important message to the diabetes community that keeping up-to-date on recommended HCP appointments, and being aware of risk factors and how to minimize additional complications are critical to maintaining good health,” said Jane Chiang, M.D., senior vice president, medical and community affairs, American Diabetes Association.

About Merck

Today's Merck is a global healthcare leader working to help the world be well. Merck is known as MSD outside the United States and Canada. Through our prescription medicines, vaccines, biologic therapies and animal health products, we work with customers and operate in more than 140 countries to deliver innovative health solutions. We also demonstrate our commitment to increasing access to healthcare through far-reaching policies, programs and partnerships. For more information, visit www.merck.com and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

About The American Diabetes Association

The American Diabetes Association is leading the fight to Stop Diabetes and its deadly consequences and fighting for those affected by diabetes. The Association funds research to prevent, cure and manage diabetes; delivers services to hundreds of communities; provides objective and credible information; and gives voice to those denied their rights because of diabetes. Founded in 1940, the ADA’s mission is to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes.