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        Our Work in Diabetes

        With the prevalence of diabetes continuing to grow in many countries, it is one of the most serious chronic health challenges we face today.

        More than

        adults in the U.S. are
        living with diabetes.

        Type 2 diabetes accounts for approximately
        - %
        of all cases of diabetes in adults in the U.S.

        Diabetes is the

        leading cause of death in the U.S. and worldwide.

        Diabetes is a point of passion for many colleagues at Merck, both personally and professionally.

        Jeron, a Merck employee, shares his own experience living with type 2 diabetes.


        Advancements in diabetes research can make a difference for patients, and there is still much more work to be done. At Merck, we strive for scientific excellence and innovation in all stages of diabetes research, from discovery through approval and afterwards. I am proud to be part of a research team that is committed to doing something truly meaningful to help people with diabetes.
        Sam Engel
        associate vice president, diabetes, endocrinology and women's health,
        Merck Research Laboratories


        America's Diabetes Challenge: Get to Your Goals is a Merck-sponsored program to raise awareness among people with type 2 diabetes about the importance of working with their doctors to set and reach their A1C goal (A1C is the average blood glucose over the past 2-3 months).


        Viola Davis

        Spokesperson for A Touch of Sugar and America’s Diabetes Challenge

        Type 2 diabetes is a cause that hits close to home for Viola – her great-aunt suffered from complications of type 2 diabetes, two of her sisters are currently learning how to live with it, and a few years ago, she was diagnosed with prediabetes. Even with this history and the prevalence of type 2 diabetes within the African-American community, it wasn’t discussed among her family. Viola is working with Merck to speak out about her experience for the first time to help people understand that type 2 diabetes management can be complicated, the disease can have serious consequences and there are vulnerable groups in need of help.

        Chef Leticia Moreinos Schwartz

        Spokesperson for A Touch of Sugar and America’s Diabetes Challenge

        After living with type 2 diabetes for many years, Chef Leticia Moreinos Schwartz's grandfather passed away from a stroke, one of the serious complications of diabetes. That's why Chef Leticia, who specializes in Latin cuisine, is working with Merck on Desafiando La Diabetes (Diabetes Challenge) to urge Hispanics with type 2 diabetes to work with their doctors to set and reach their A1C goals. The loss of her grandfather prompted her entire family to reevaluate their lifestyle, so Chef Leticia is sharing diabetes-friendly recipes that the whole family can enjoy.

        A Touch of Sugar explores the diabetes health care epidemic that affects every community in the U.S., told through the voices of people united in their struggle with this chronic disease. Diabetes management doesn’t occur in isolation. These stories bring to life the emotional challenges, social factors and public perceptions that have a significant impact, but go unnoticed far too often.

        Created in collaboration with Merck, directed by Ani Simon-Kennedy and narrated by acclaimed actress and documentary spokesperson Viola Davis, the film attests to the resiliency of the human spirit and challenges the national perception of life with type 2 diabetes. Interviews with patients and their loved ones, as well as doctors, advocates and thought leaders in the space, explore the larger diabetes ecosystem at work and help to reinforce type 2 diabetes as an urgent public health issue that cannot be ignored, especially among underserved populations.

        As Shenekqual prepares for her wedding, Stewart heads to Capitol Hill, Niurka provides for her family, and Susie searches for the support she needs, A Touch of Sugar sheds light on how we must fight the stigma associated with the disease and confront this epidemic – one patient and one community at a time.



        Helping to Reduce Health Disparities in Diabetes

        In 2016, the Merck Foundation launched a new initiative, Bridging the Gap: Reducing Disparities in Diabetes Care, to improve access to high-quality diabetes care and reduce health disparities in vulnerable and underserved communities in the U.S.

        With $16 million in funding from the Foundation over five years, Bridging the Gap will support diabetes programs in selected communities around the country, with a goal of promoting best practices in primary care and advancing collaborations to reduce diabetes disparities.

        LEARN MORE


        Type 2 Diabetes: A Focus on A1C
        An Interview with Dr. Sam Engel

        LEARN MORE

        Understanding Diabetes
        Diabetes is a chronic disease and a growing health issue.

        LEARN MORE

        America's Diabetes Challenge
        Take the next step. Get tips to help tackle common diabetes management challenges head on.

        LEARN MORE