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How to Text ‘Diabetes’ in Chinese

In response to the growing incidence of diabetes in China, medical device maker Medtronic is expanding its presence there through partnerships with the country’s largest diabetes management platform Welltang as well as the Chinese government. “Currently, the Chinese have an epidemic of diabetes, which is predicted to get worse,” said Dr. P. Scott Corbett, a professor of Chinese history at California State University, Channel Islands in Camarillo. “Reporting something like 114 million cases and probably 500 million pre-diabetes cases means that somewhere around 12 percent of the population has it or will have it.” In April, the Dublin, Ireland-based device company, which has its diabetes division in Northridge, began collaborating with Welltang to add the “Medtronic Zone” section to the Welltang mobile app. With over 2 million users, the app provides Medtronic insulin pump users access to therapy information to better manage glucose levels using their Medtronic devices. Within the next few weeks, the device maker will also unveil its “Life Pumped Up” program, a new service for Medtronic customers learning to use their insulin pumps. The program will include customized pump training and support, startup supply packages with delivery services and monthly glucose reports. “By collaborating with a company already immersed in the culture of managing diabetes in China, we will be able to make Medtronic relevant while we increase our ability to engage with this large diabetes population,” said Pamela Reese, senior manager of communications at Medtronic Diabetes. “The established Welltang community is dedicated to helping people with diabetes live productive, normal lives.” This is Medtronic’s first mobile health initiative in China. However, the company partnered with the Chengdu municipal government in January to open a diabetes device manufacturing facility, which will be the second Medtronic plant in the region. The first location manufactures portable blood dialysis equipment. – Stephanie Henkel

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