World Diabetes Day (WDD) is observed every year on November 14, the birth date of Sir Frederick Grant Banting, who, along with Charles Best discovered insulin and its therapeutic potential in 1922.

Banting refused to put his name on the insulin patent because he felt it was unethical for a doctor to profit from a discovery that would save lives.

The IDF (International Diabetes Federation) and WHO (World Health Organization) started observing WDD from 1991 to highlight the threat posed by diabetes across the globe. In 2006, WDD became an official United Nations Day.

Over the years, the WDD campaign has been successfully working to focus the attention of the general public, political groups and policymakers on the critical issues posed by diabetes.

The aim of the WDD campaign is to offer a global platform for people across nationality, race, gender and age group to come together and strive to take concerted and coordinated steps to alleviate the distress caused by diabetes worldwide.

The logo symbolizes the unification and solidarity of the global diabetes community against the epidemic of diabetes.

Nurses make the difference

Each year, WDD focuses the campaign around a dedicated theme and for 2020, the theme is Nurses Make the Difference.

~6 million MORE nurses are required globally

The role of healthcare professionals, especially nurses, is becoming increasingly critical in the management of this life-long condition. Often, nurses are the first or the primary healthcare professionals interacting with a person with diabetes.

Nurses need to be empowered with adequate knowledge and skillsets as their preliminary assessment, care, management and counselling to a diabetes patient needs to be of high quality and impact.

The roles and responsibilities of nurses when treating diabetes patients, include:

  • Early screening and detection of diabetes to ensure the timely start of the treatment
  • Providing self-management training
  • Providing psychological support
  • Encouraging self-care
  • Assessing and advising about the nutritional needs

It is imperative that diabetes management nurses possess excellent analytical and interpersonal skills. Plus, they must have an attention to detail.

Shortage of nurses around the globe

There is a dire need for extensive funding and education to empower the nurses with proper training and skills to support people struggling with diabetes and those who are susceptible to the condition.

However, there is a global shortage of nurses, who represent nearly 50% of the current scarcity in health workers, according to the WHO.

  • Globally, the nursing workforce is represented by 27.9 million individuals and 19.3 million of them are professionals. Also, nearly 90% of nurses are women*
  •  There is a shortage of 5.9 million nurses globally, of which 89% is in the low and middle-income countries (LMICs)*
  • Nursing staff will have to increase by 8% per year to overcome the global shortfall by 2030*

Source: WHO

The bottom line

Policymakers and healthcare providers must recognize the importance of investing in the training and education of nurses. With the right knowledge and expertise, nurses can contribute greatly to mitigating the distress caused by diabetes worldwide.

As a committed global insulins player, Biocon Biologics has been engaging with diverse stakeholders globally to take forward its vision of going beyond the product to help transform the patient ecosystem and touch the lives of millions of people with diabetes globally. Biocon Biologics is supporting IDF’s WDD 2020 campaign that focuses on promoting the role of nurses in the prevention and management of diabetes as the company believes the need of the hour is to implement a continuum of care model that encompasses a diabetes patient’s journey from awareness to early diagnosis and treatment.


World Diabetes Day :

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