Diabetes in Society


Improving Europe's response to diabetes: the Country Assessment of Diabetes Institutions and Services

The International Diabetes Federation European Region (IDF Europe) represents 62 member organizations, which operate in 45 countries, each with a different culture, healthcare system, economic level and political commitment to support diabetes. Developing common positions and supporting certain policy changes at the European level requires thorough knowledge and understanding of each member’s particular circumstances.

Focus on the frontline - the Chinese Diabetes Society

China is at the epicentre of the global diabetes epidemic. Our diabetes population is now the world’s largest: more than 92 million people. Diabetes prevalence in this country, at 9.7%, is among the highest – far higher than the world average of 6.4%. Even more worryingly, nearly 150 million people in China are at high risk for developing type 2 diabetes.

Type 2 diabetes, the challenge of prevention and the WHO Commission on Social Determinants of Health

There are huge disparities in the risk of death and disease across the world, with life expectancy at birth ranging from greater than 80 years in Japan and Sweden, to less than 50 years in many African countries. Disparities also exist within countries and, irrespective of a country’s overall wealth, overall risk of disease and death tend to be strongly related to socioeconomic position, with the worse health in the less well off.

The good, the bad and the ugly - treatment of diabetes in the cinema

Diabetes has a leading role in the current global epidemic of non-communicable diseases. But it has a rather ambiguous relationship with the ‘seventh art’. On the one hand, diabetes has made a number of high-profile appearances in blockbuster movies – which has helped to raise its profile among the general public. On the other, it remains underrepresented – only around a dozen films have dealt with the condition in the past 25 years – and is often distorted by the time it reaches the screen.

Diabetes at the wheel – the need for safety and fairness under the law

Hypoglycaemia at the wheel is the most common acute risk for drivers with diabetes, and a concern for public road safety. Drivers with diabetes worldwide are subject to special legislation, although the restrictions and requirements vary considerably from one country to another. But are drivers with diabetes really a danger? Are they more likely to provoke an accident than people without the condition? João Manuel Valente Nabais steers us through the related research and reports from Europe on the EU’s latest laws on driving with diabetes.

Solidarity with Haiti: the global diabetes response

On 12 January 2010, a violent earthquake, measuring 7.0 on the Richter scale, rocked the Haitian capital, Port-au-Prince, and its surroundings. The exact number of victims remains unclear, but the Haitian Government has put the death toll at 230,000 people; 250,000 more were injured and more than 1.5 million reported homeless in the immediate aftermath of the disaster. The Haitian Foundation for Diabetes and Cardiovascular Diseases (FHADIMAC) launched a major campaign to help all people with diabetes and hypertension in the region. Nancy Larco and René Charles report from Port-au-Prince.

Olympian Kris Freeman - at the top of his game with diabetes

Kris Freeman is arguably the best US cross-country distance skier for a generation. A key member of the US ski team, his absolute commitment is typical of the sporting elite. But he has another side: with three Winter Olympics under his belt, he is the only acknowledged endurance athlete with type 1 diabetes. He describes himself as an ardent spokesperson for diabetes awareness.

The implications of the new Chinese prevalence study

At the end of March 2010, a diabetes prevalence survey attracted the attention of the world’s general media. Diabetes prevalence surveys are not usually terribly exciting to audiences outside the world of epidemiology but the number of people in China estimated to have diabetes now was so large that it took the news world by surprise. The findings of the study have a number of important implications for China and beyond. International Diabetes Federation epidemiologist, David Whiting describes why this study is important and how it adds to our knowledge about the diabetes pandemic.

Diabetes goes global at IDF's mega-congress in Montreal

This year marked the 20th meeting of the IDF World Diabetes Congress, which was held in Montreal, Canada, in October. The five-day congress brought thousands of international delegates to the Canadian city to discuss burning issues in diabetes care and examine local, national and regional solutions to a growing global problem.

Can NGOs and INGOs be public health policy entrepreneurs?

At the global level, a defining feature of what is now called ‘global health governance’ is the extension of the role of policy actor beyond national governments and international agencies to include public/private partnerships, private foundations, international NGOs, as well as the private sector.