International Standards for Diabetes Education

Diabetes is a serious health condition that poses challenges to a person’s daily life, emotional well-being and perceived quality of life. It increases one’s risk of developing long-term diabetes and other health-related complications and encountering an early death. To meet the global demand for effective diabetes prevention, quality care, and effective treatment strategies, adequate resources must be allocated.

Standards of medical care for diabetes throughout the world recognise diabetes education as an essential component of quality diabetes care that achieves positive health outcomes. Significantly, 99% of the management of chronic diseases such as diabetes is undertaken by the person with the disease and/or his or her caregivers. Therefore, initial and on-going diabetes education must be comprehensive in scope, yet individualised to meet the specific needs of each person with diabetes.

The number of health professionals who demonstrate a solid understanding of the principles of diabetes care and education is inadequate to meet the needs of the growing number of people with or at risk for diabetes worldwide. The International Standards for Education of Diabetes Health Professionals (the International Standards) are intended for use by institutions that currently provide or wish to provide a health professional diabetes education programme.

The International Standards provide guidance about essential information that health professionals need to know about diabetes and its management. Health professionals will be better-equipped to address the growing burden of diabetes on health systems if the International Standards and other resources and tools such as the IDF Diabetes Education Modules and the IDF Curriculum are used to guide health professional education. Application of this knowledge and skills will enhance care and promote achievement of positive outcomes to be achieved with and for people with diabetes.

Download the International Standards (pdf, 225KB)