World Diabetes Day - Start with the family

13th November 2018

The theme for World Diabetes Day 2018 and 2019 is The Family and Diabetes. Families have a key role to play in addressing the modifiable risk factors for type 2 diabetes and must be provided with the education, resources and environments to live a healthy lifestyle.

According to anthropologist Ida Nicolaisen, the nature of family relations, the ways in which authority is exercised, and the cultural values held within the family and the wider community have important implications for how people with diabetes are perceived and treated.

Over 425 million people are currently living with diabetes. Most of these cases are type 2 diabetes, which is largely preventable through regular physical activity, a healthy and balanced diet, and the promotion of healthy living environments. 

In many countries, the cost of insulin injection and daily monitoring alone can consume half of a family’s average disposable income, and regular and affordable access to essential diabetes medicines are out of reach for too many

One in two people currently living with diabetes is undiagnosed. Most cases are type 2 diabetes. Early diagnosis and treatment are key to prevent the complications of diabetes and achieve healthy outcomes. All families are potentially affected by diabetes and so awareness of the signs, symptoms and risk factors for all types of diabetes are vital to help detect it early.

Improving access is urgent

In many countries, the cost of insulin injection and daily monitoring alone can consume half of a family’s average disposable income, and regular and affordable access to essential diabetes medicines are out of reach for too many. Improving access to affordable diabetes medicines and care is therefore urgent to avoid increased costs for the individual and family, which impact on health outcomes.

World Diabetes Day (WDD) was created in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation and WHO in response to growing concerns about the escalating health threat posed by diabetes. WDD is the world’s largest diabetes awareness campaign reaching a global audience of over 1 billion people in more than 160 countries. It draws attention to issues of paramount importance to the diabetes world and keeps diabetes firmly in the public and political spotlight.

Learn more