BBC Tamil service launches series on diabetes

The BBC’s Tamil service, BBC Tamilosai, is launching a major documentary series exploring diabetes in India. From Sunday 29 March, the weekly nine-part series, The silent killer: bitter truths about diabetes, focuses on the various aspects of the disease in India and examines its growing effects on the country’s social fabric.

There are around 40 million people with diabetes in India, and the disease causes a heavy strain on the country’s health sector. The series talks to patients, health officials and medical experts, exploring the status of research into diabetes in India, the underlying causes of the disease, and prospects for the future.

L.R.Jagadheesan, Producer at BBC Tamilosai, has toured various parts of Southern India to examine the issue. He says: “Diabetes is now a social as well as a health issue, as livelihoods of people in both urban and rural communities are threatened. We wanted to throw light on the effects of the disease which are often hushed up or left outside public discourse: erectile dysfunction among some male diabetic patients, increasing incidence of diabetes among pregnant women and juvenile diabetes.”

Head of BBC Tamilosai, Thirumalai Manivannan, notes that the series reflects the BBC Tamilosai commitment to cover major health issues: “We have covered controversial and complex health issues such as HIV/Aids and TB. This new series looks into the multiple impact of this disease on the patients, their families, the society and the health system, and we hope it will be a welcome addition to the public discourse on this critical issue.”

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