Mobilising for diabetes
At European level, the main advocacy targets of IDF Europe are the EU Institutions (European Parliament and European Commission), the Council of Europe and the World Health Organization European Region. At national level, the Federation acts as a bridge for its Members by informing them on the latest policy developments Europe-wide.
The theme of WDD 2016 was 'EYES ON DIABETES'. IDF Europe has organised a number of events on October, leading up to the big day on 14 Nov.
COUNCIL OF EUROPE
IDF Europe was present with an exhibition stand at the Council of Europe’s Regional and National Government Congress (19 to 21 October 2016), with the aim of increasing IDF Europe and our Member’s presence amongst policy-makers at national level.
The 300 participants of the Congress had the opportunity to learn about diabetes and discuss implications of this condition in the European Region. They were also offered a blood sugar level test, an effective awareness-raising activtiy. We wish to thank the nurses of CEED (the European Centre for the study on diabetes) for making this popular activtiy possible.
In 2011 the Council of Europe released Resolution 1804 “ Safeguarding children and young people from obesity and type 2 diabetes”. Five years down the road, an appraisal of progress is still elusive, therefore we met with the Commissions on Migration and of Social Affairs to explore ways to keep diabetes on the agenda of upcoming debates.
On 8 November, in partnership with MEPs Marian Harkin and Anne Hedh, IDF Europe hosted, a lunch debate on Mobilising Political will to prevent diabetes and its complications. The event aimed to facilitate a discussion between MEPs, the European Commission and IDF Europe Members on the development of a European strategy to prevent diabetes and the complications that arise from it, putting diabetes at the forefront of disease-specific issues discussed at the EU level.
The European Commission was represented by DG SANTE with insights on its approach on diabetes prevention, promotion and participation, and by DG Connect on protecting minors from harmful advertising of unhealthy foods.
Marjatta Stenius-Kaukonen, (Finnish Diabetes Association), former MP and MEP, and Stefanie Gerlach, (Diabetes DE-Deutsche Diabetes-Hilfe) offered first-hand examples of national prevention policies. Difficulties arising from conflicting European internal market concerns were also discussed.
Two youth advocates, IDF Europe Staff Exchange Luca Cappellini and 2016 Youth Leadership Camp participant Uros Bogdanovic, gave their contribuition to the audience debate which concluded the event. As in previous years, the partnership with the European Parliament included an exhibition on diabetes; blood glucose testing for MEPs and staff, as well as a ‘vitality’ healthy dish on offer for the whole week at the Canteen of the Parliament.
On 14 November, in collaboration with the Medical Unit of the European Commission, IDF Europe organised a lunchtime presentation on “Tips and tools for diabetes prevention and management at work”, delivered by Board Member Dr Dario Rahelić. A lively debate with the audience, both in the room and in remote connection from Luxembourg, followed.
220 European Commission staff members took the opportunity to have their blood glucose tested, including the Commissioner for Health and Food safety, Dr Vytenis Andriukaitis.
We wish to thank Viviane de Laveleye (Belgian Diabetes Association) for performing the test at both events at the European Institutions.