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November 14th is World Diabetes Day (WDD), and this year, the world is celebrating the 101st anniversary of the discovery of insulin by Frederick Banting and Charles Best, a landmark development that transformed the daily lives of people with diabetes.

WDD was created by the International Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization in 1991 to highlight the diverse issues people with diabetes face and to educate the public on lifestyle changes that might slow the progression of type 2 diabetes. In 2006, it was recognized as an official United Nations day. Today, WDD is the largest diabetes awareness campaign around the globe.

The official celebration date for the campaign every year is November 14. This date was chosen to honor Frederick Banting, who was born on November 14, 1891.

Why Is World Diabetes Day Important?

The diabetes epidemic is one of the most important public health issues of our time. Currently, more than 530 million people around the world are living with diabetes, and many more are at risk. But the disease’s impact often goes unrecognized. WDD is an opportunity to change this by raising awareness about these issues:

  • The needs of people with diabetes
  • The rapidly increasing number of all types of diabetes diagnoses
  • The serious health risks associated with the disease
  • The value of healthy lifestyle habits
  • The importance of getting tested and beginning treatment

Each year, a theme is chosen to draw attention to topics that might otherwise be overlooked in conversations about diabetes. Themes have included preventing diabetic eye diseases, understanding how diabetes affects women, and honoring healthcare workers who treat diabetes.

WDD coincides with National Diabetes Month. November was designated National Diabetes Month by President Reagan in 1987 to increase public knowledge about the types of diabetes, risk factors, and symptoms. Like WDD, every year, National Diabetes Month revolves around a theme. This year’s focus is gestational diabetes, a serious health condition that affects 6-9% of pregnant people in the United States.

What Is the Theme for World Diabetes Day 2022?

The theme for WDD 2021–2023 is “Access to Diabetes Care.” With this year’s slogan being “Education to Protect Tomorrow,” activities in the campaign focus on calling attention to the need for better access to quality diabetes education for both healthcare providers and people living with diabetes. Diabetes education can help stop the rise of diabetes and prevent its complications.

The International Diabetes Foundation has launched a new online platform that offers free interactive courses to help people living with diabetes and their caregivers understand and effectively manage the condition. Healthcare professionals have access to the IDF School of Diabetes, which provides a selection of free, premium, online courses that help them stay up to date on diabetes management and treatment.

Key facts:

  • Today, diabetes affects more than half a billion people worldwide.
  • Nearly half of people living with diabetes don’t know they have it, which puts them at increased risk of complications.
  • The rising prevalence of diabetes is putting healthcare systems and healthcare professionals under increasing pressure and preventing people living with diabetes from getting access to the care and education they need.
  • More than 95% of the time, people with diabetes are looking after themselves.

What can be done:

  • People living with diabetes need access to education to understand their condition and know how to manage it.
  • Healthcare professionals need to make the most of the limited time they have to provide the best possible advice and care.
  • People living with diabetes and healthcare professionals need to keep their diabetes knowledge up to date.

How Can You Observe World Diabetes Day?

World Diabetes Day invites everyone to participate in raising awareness about diabetes and supporting the campaign. Here’s how you can get involved:

  • Wear clothing or accessories with the blue circle logo. This logo was adopted as the official symbol of WDD in 2007 and has become an emblem of diabetes awareness and unity with the global diabetes community.
  • Organize a local diabetes awareness walk or run or join one by checking out WDD activities in your area.
  • Sign online petitions supporting increased access to diabetes education and care.
  • Discuss diabetes risks with people you know, and get tested if you have any risk factors. You can learn more by taking a risk assessment test created by the International Diabetes Federation.
  • Organize a diabetes awareness event with lectures, workshops, and literature to educate others on how they can prevent or better treat diabetes.
  • Volunteer to assist with diabetes screenings.
  • Call or write to your representatives to urge them to take action.

You can also show your support for WDD online:

  • Use the campaign hashtags #WorldDiabetesDay and #EducateToProtectTomorrow on social media.
  • Share campaign posters, infographics, and other visuals to relay campaign facts to your online community.
  • Use the Blue Circle selfie app to take a picture and share it on social media.

By taking these simple steps, you will be joining a worldwide movement to support people living with diabetes.

How Do We Support World Diabetes Day?

We develop innovative health solutions that help break down barriers to blood glucose testing to help people manage their diabetes. And we amplify the good work diabetes organizations are doing year-round to bring awareness to the issues people with diabetes face in their daily lives.

Our POGO Automatic® Monitoring System was developed to provide a discreet, simple, and reliable way to check blood glucose levels and make regular monitoring more accessible. By creating opportunities for smarter diabetes management, we strive to make living with diabetes easier.

Help us raise awareness by supporting World Diabetes Day on November 14. Together, we can make a difference.

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