About Focus on Diabetes

Closeup view of person's eye

Eye Health

About Focus on Diabetes

ADA logo with Focus On Diabetes logo

Focus on Diabetes is a multi-year initiative that brings together the American Diabetes Association and Visionary Partners from leading organizations in vision care to increase awareness about diabetes and eye health. This initiative provides easy steps and valuable information and experiences to prevent diabetes-related eye disease and preserve eyesight

Many people with diabetes-related eye disease are at risk for vision loss; the good news is that it is preventable with early detection, timely treatment, and appropriate follow-up care.

An annual comprehensive eye exam is the first, critical step to helping people with diabetes preserve their vision. Learning how to protect your eyesight, spot symptoms, and ask your healthcare team the right questions is imperative for any person at risk or living with diabetes.

Focus on Diabetes™ promotes awareness and provides valuable tools such as the 60-second ADA Diabetes Risk Test. ADA also has a private Focus on Diabetes™ Facebook group you can join to stay connected, ask questions, share stories, and read other people's experiences.

Focus on Diabetes™ is a response to the risk of diabetes-related eye disease, including diabetic retinopathy (DR) and diabetic macular edema (DME). This multi-year initiative attempts to decrease the skyrocketing cost of diabetes to people living with prediabetes or diagnosed with the disease and to society.

The economic burden of diabetes on the United States healthcare system is $139 billion for vision-related disorders alone. For those living with diabetes, an annual eye exam with an eye care professional can help prevent or delay disease and vision loss caused by diabetes. Woman having an eye exam This multi-year initiative responds to the personal and economic costs of diabetes and eye disease by raising awareness and suggesting actions for those at risk for diabetes-related eye disease. Focus on Diabetes™ provides support and education to those affected by diabetes-related eye disease and educates health care professionals about diabetes-related eye disease and how to prevent it.

There are currently over 34 million American adults living with diabetes, and around 88 million Americans living with prediabetes. However, nearly 85% are unaware.[i]

If you're at risk for diabetes, you're also at risk for diabetes-related eye disease and vision loss, but a comprehensive eye exam can help catch any eye health issues. Around 20% of people first learn they have diabetes as a result of a comprehensive eye exam.[ii]

Download the 2020 Impact Report

Focus on Diabetes™ visionary partners are VSP® Vision Care and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals. Together with the American Diabetes Association, the Visionary Partners will focus on an often overlooked but costly and devastating complication of Diabetes: vision loss.

VSP® Vision Care and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, our visionary partners, are dedicated to helping people maintain their vision, including those with Diabetes. This partnership will help spread awareness on how to save your vision to those living with diabetic eye disease and their caregivers and healthcare providers, which will help reduce health care costs associated with diabetes-related eye diseases.

1-800-DIABETES (800-342-2383)

American Diabetes Association®, VSP® Vision Care, and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. are collaborating on a public health initiative to save sight in those living with Diabetes. The multi-year campaign will raise awareness of the critical role eye exams can play in early detection and prevention of diabetes-related eye disease.

[i] Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Diabetes Fast Facts, available at https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/basics/quick-facts.html. Accessed June 23, 2020.

[ii] Klunk, E. MedCity News. How to curb the high cost of diabetic eye disease, available at https://medcitynews.com/2020/01/how-to-curb-the-high-cost-of-diabetic-eye-disease/. Accessed June 23, 2020.