14 November: World Diabetes Day
The World Diabetes Day was observed every year across the world on 14 November to raise awareness about diabetes. Observance of day aims to pursue multilateral efforts to promote and improve human health and provide access to health-care treatment and education.
The theme for year 2017 is “Women and diabetes – Our right to a healthy future’. It aims to promote affordable access to essential diabetes medicines and technologies for all women with diabetes to achieve optimal diabetes outcomes and strengthen their capacity to prevent type 2 diabetes.
Women and Diabetes
Diabetes is ninth leading cause of death in women globally, causing 2.1 million deaths each year. Currently, there are over 199 million women living with diabetes and it is projected to increase to 313 million by 2040. Two out of every five women with diabetes are of reproductive age which accounts for over 60 million women worldwide. Women with diabetes have more difficulty conceiving and may have poor pregnancy outcomes.
The World Diabetes Day was instituted by United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in 2007 by passing resolution A/RES/61/225. The resolution had encouraged Member States to develop national policies for prevention, treatment and care of diabetes.
Diabetes is a chronic, progressive non-communicable disease (NCD) characterized by elevated levels of blood sugar (blood glucose). It occurs when (i) the pancreas does not produce enough of the insulin hormone, which regulates blood sugar (ii) the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. Type 1 diabetes occurs when the body doesn’t make enough insulin, and type 2 diabetes occurs when the body doesn’t make or use insulin very well, causing glucose to remain in the blood, which can lead to serious problems.