More than 130 health workers from CNMI, American Samoa, Guam, Palau, Federated States of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands are are attending a meeting in Saipan to discuss measures to fight diabetes.
Thirty percent of CNMI residents are affected by the illness, ranking the Commonwealth among the top five populations for the rate of diabetes,
According to 2002 statistics there were 3,019 known diabetes patients in the CNMI.
In the past, type II diabetes was seen in older patients, but is now being seen in children as young as six.
The illness has forced the Commonwealth Health Centre to install 18 additional dialysis units.