Epidemiological Statistics

  • In the last ten years, diabetes rates in Alberta have almost doubled.
  • As of 2022, approximately 8% of Albertans live with type 1 or type 2 diabetes. That is equivalent to over 403,000 people.
  • In 2009, 19,324 new cases of diabetes were reported in Alberta. This equates to more than 1,600 new cases a month or 54 each day.
  • In Alberta, the incidence and prevalence of diabetes in men is greater than women across older age groups.
  • Of the Albertans diagnosed with diabetes, 90-95% will have type 2 diabetes.


Gestational Diabetes Mellitus (GDM) Statistics

  • In the past ten years, rates of GDM have increased by 50%.
  • Women over the age of 35 years have significantly higher rates of GDM.
  • When compared to the general population, aboriginal women have greater rates of GDM.


Healthcare System Statistics

  • Adults with diabetes see family physicians and specialists 2-3 times more often than those without diabetes.
  • Adults with diabetes on average spend 3 more days in hospital compared to those without diabetes.
  • The North, Edmonton and South zones have the highest age-adjusted prevalence of diabetes, while the Calgary and Central zones are below the provincial rate.
  • The total number of GP visits in adults with diabetes has almost tripled in the last 15 years.
  • Specialist visits for adults with diabetes have steadily increased over the past 15 years.
  • Albertan children with diabetes aged 1-4 years had the greatest number of visits to the emergency department as well as total days in hospital.
  • Adults with diabetes spend greater than 3 times the number of days, and children and adolescents spend almost 9 times the number of days in hospital each year than the general population.
  • The aging population has the highest prevalence of diabetes in Alberta. This population tends to have additional health problems that subsequently increase the burden on Alberta’s health care system.


Diabetes Complication Statistics

Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease

  • People with diabetes are 2.5 to more than 3 times as likely to suffer heart attacks or episodes of unstable angina than the general population.
  • People with diabetes are 3 to 4 times as likely to require coronary revascularization procedures than the general population.
  • In the past 15 years, the use of PCI relative to CABG has increased.

Diabetes and Foot Complications

  • In 2009, people with diabetes were twice as likely to have foot disease than the general population.
  • People with diabetes who are 75 years or older have the highest rates of foot disease.
  • The rate of lower limb amputation has remained steady over the last 15 years, with people with diabetes being 15 times more likely to have a lower limb amputation than people without diabetes.
  • Men are twice as likely to have lower limb amputations than women in Alberta.
  • In the metro Edmonton and Calgary health zones the rates of diabetic foot disease and lower limb amputations were the lowest.

Rates of Foot Disease

Diabetes and Kidney Disease

  • In 2009, Albertans with diabetes had 12 times greater rates of end-stage renal disease compared to the general population.
  • From 1997-2009, the proportion of prevalent end-stage renal disease patients with diabetes had increased from 39% to 56%.
  • Over the last several years, the incidence and prevalence of end‑stage renal disease in people with diabetes has been declining.

Diabetes and Eye Disease

  • Between 2001-2006, the number of Albertans with diabetes who had an eye examination within 3 years of their diagnosis fell from 58% to 49%, despite that the number of examinations provided by ophthalmologists over the past 15 years to people with diabetes has doubled. This suggests that there is an unmet need for ophthalmologists in Alberta.
  • Cataracts were over 4 times as common in Albertans with diabetes compared to the general population in 2009.

Diabetes and Mental Health

  • People with diabetes have a higher prevalence of mental health disorders when compared to the general population.
  • Over the last 19 years, rates of non-organic psychoses have consistently increased in people with diabetes but have remained stable in the general population.
  • Younger adults with diabetes have a higher prevalence of affective disorders and anxiety disorders.
  • The South zone has the highest rates of non-organic psychoses and substance use disorders, with increased prevalence in those with diabetes compared to those without diabetes.

Rates of Affective Disorder

Compared to Canada

  • Alberta has the lowest prevalence of diabetes in Canada at 4.9%, compared to the highest in Newfoundland and Labrador at 6.5%

Diabetes in Canada