November is diabetes awareness month and 14th November is World Diabetes Day!
The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) has been on the forefront in running the campaign against Diabetes. The Campaign dubbed World Diabetes Day (WDD) unites the global diabetes community to voice out diabetes awareness and advocacy. It aims to bring to light the realities that patients face while dealing with the chronic conditions brought about by the different types of diabetes.
The World Diabetes Day (WDD) was a creation of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) after realizing there were growing concerns of the enormous threat posed by diabetes. It became an official United Nations Day in 2006 marking it every November 14, Sir Frederick Banting’s birthday, a core scientist who led the discovery of insulin alongside Charles Best in 1922.
Every year the WDD campaign seeks to have a global outreach. Currently, the outreach serves 1 billion people in over 160 countries annually. It draws attention to the issues affecting people living with diabetes and the effect it has on their families as well as the risk factors involved.
The World Diabetes Day campaign aims to:
- Be the platform to promote IDF advocacy efforts throughout the year.
- Be the global driver to promote the importance of taking coordinated and concerted actions to confront diabetes as a critical global health issue.
The WDD is represented by a blue circle logo, a global symbol for the fight against diabetes. It signifies the unity of the global diabetes community in response to the diabetes epidemic.
World Diabetes Day 2018-19
The theme for World Diabetes Day 2018 and 2019 is The Family and Diabetes. Visit the campaign website for more information and tips on how you can get involved.
Every year, the World Diabetes Day campaign focuses on a dedicated theme that runs for one or more years. The theme for World Diabetes Day 2018-19 is Family and Diabetes.
The campaign from this year and in the next two years seeks to align with the IDF strategic plan and facilitate planning, development, promotion and participation. Over those two years, the campaign will aim to;
- Raise awareness of the impact that diabetes has on the family and support network of those affected.
- Promote the role of the family in the management, care, prevention and education of diabetes.
Facts and Figures about Diabetes (Source | IDF | Courtesy)
Family and Diabetes
The global figures of people living with Diabetes are staggering with over four hundred and twenty-five (425) million affected. This basically means, almost the same number or more families are affected directly and indirectly. According to WHO, most of these cases are the Type 2 Diabetes. To a great extent, type 2 diabetes can be prevented. Healthy lifestyle habits are key to preventing Diabetes Type 2. They include; healthy and highly hygienic living conditions, healthy and balanced diets as well as consistent physical activity.
Families are key stakeholders in the campaign against diabetes, a fete that will give a more protective cushion for their loved ones. Some of the risk factors as discussed above can be modified and thus the risks addressed. Of key importance is the provision of adequate resources for patients coupled with the education and surroundings to live a fit and healthy lifestyle.
It is estimated that half of the population living with diabetes are undiagnosed, a reality that worsens the management situation of diabetes. It is important to note just like many other chronic illnesses, early diagnosis and treatment are key to prevent the complications of diabetes and achieve healthy outcomes.
Families are encouraged to be on the forefront to provide adequate care and this includes being aware of the signs and symptoms, the risk factors that can aggravate the diabetes situation. Where there are such factors, early diagnosis would be key to prevent complications.
The cost of diabetes
Diabetes is no friend to any family’s pocket. It is very expensive for any individual and family. Daily monitoring and insulin injections are expensive and greatly affect a family’s average disposable income. For poor families, drugs can be out of reach. The campaign seeks to call stakeholders of society to help in improving access to affordable diabetes medicines and care and in turn avoid increased costs for the individual and family, which impact on health outcomes.
Education and Awareness
The family being the point of focus in providing care needs more access to education programmes on diabetes. Currently, only 25 per cent of family members have access to educational programmes. The statistics are worse in subsaharan Africa and many parts of Asia and South America. Since family support has been shown to have a substantial effect on improving management, it is important that this self-management education be accessible for all. Reduction in the emotional impact on patients and their loved ones will to a large extent improve the quality of life.
How Can you get involved?
Get involved through the WDD campaigns. These campaigns help many to get access to education and management tips, drugs etc. By simply sharing information, you go beyond the threshold over which lives are saved.
- Join the #WDD2018 Movement!
- Research on #WDD2018 and share widely about it
- Share your story or that of a loved one and how you or your family was affected by diabetes
- Join the campaign and create awareness #NovemberIsDiabetesAwarenessMonth
- #WorldDiabetesDay #November4th
- Support and make donations to a cause that is involved in diabetes research
- Volunteer to help a family and/or patients affected
- Share Educational Content on Social Media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter
The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) is an umbrella organization of over 230 national diabetes associations in 170 countries and territories. It represents the interests of the growing number of people with diabetes and those at risk. The Federation has been leading the global diabetes community since 1950.