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World Diabetes Day (WDD) was created in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the World Health Organization (WHO) in response to growing concerns about the escalating health threat posed by Diabetes.

World Diabetes Day became an official United Nations Day in 2006 with the passage of United Nation Resolution 61/225.  It is the world’s largest Diabetes awareness campaign reaching a global audience of over 1 billion people in more than 160 countries. The campaign draws attention to issues of paramount importance to the diabetes world and keeps Diabetes firmly in the public and political spotlight.

World Diabetes Day aims:

To be the platform to promote IDF advocacy efforts throughout the year.

To be the global driver to promote the importance of taking coordinated and concerted actions to confront diabetes as a critical global health issue.

The campaign is represented by a blue circle logo that was adopted in 2007 after the passage of the UN Resolution on Diabetes. The blue circle is the global symbol for Diabetes awareness. It signifies the unity of the global Diabetes community in response to the Diabetes epidemic.

The Theme for WDD 2017 is Women and Diabetes.

The World Diabetes Day 2017 campaign will promote the importance of affordable and equitable access for all women at risk for or living with Diabetes, to the essential Diabetes medicines and technologies, self-management education and information they require to achieve optimal Diabetes outcomes and strengthen their capacity to prevent Type 2 Diabetes.

There are currently over 199 million women living with Diabetes and this total is projected to increase to 313 million by 2040. Gender roles and power dynamics influence vulnerability to Diabetes, affect access to health services and health seeking behavior for women and amplify the impact of Diabetes on women.

Diabetes is the 9th leading cause of death in women globally, causing 2.1 million deaths each year. As a result of socio-economic conditions, girls and women with Diabetes experience barriers in accessing cost-effective Diabetes prevention, early detection, diagnosis, treatment and care, particularly in developing countries. Socio-economic inequalities expose women to the main risk factors of Diabetes, including poor diet and nutrition, physical inactivity, tobacco consumption and harmful use of alcohol.

Two out of every five women with Diabetes are of reproductive age, accounting for over 60 million women worldwide. Women with Diabetes have more difficulty conceiving and may have poor pregnancy outcomes. Without pre-conception planning, Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes can result in a significantly higher risk of maternal and child mortality and morbidity.

Approximately one in seven births is affected by Gestational Diabetes (GDM), a severe and neglected threat to maternal and child health. Many women with GDM experience pregnancy-related complications including high blood pressure, large birth weight babies and obstructed labour. A significant number of women with GDM also go on to develop Type 2 Diabetes resulting in further healthcare complications and costs.

Stigmatisation and discrimination faced by people with Diabetes are particularly pronounced for girls and women, who carry a double burden of discrimination because of their health status and the inequalities perpetrated in male-dominated societies. These inequalities can discourage girls and women from seeking diagnosis and treatment, preventing them from achieving positive health outcomes.

Information from http://www.worlddiabetesday.org/