The year 2001 was an exciting time in diabetes care and education for both healthcare professionals and people with diabetes. Not only were there innovations in the treatment of diabetes, but the results of the first Diabetes Attitudes Wishes and Needs (DAWN) study were published. It is easy to forget just how revolutionary DAWN was for its time. It was international in scope and the largest and most comprehensive study, until that time, of the psychosocial realities of living with and caring for diabetes. But what made DAWN truly revolutionary was that it unequivocally demonstrated that diabetes management was more than blood glucose readings and medications. Diabetes care that focuses only on achieving medical targets, while ignoring the personal, health system and societal impact of diabetes is flawed and doomed to fail.