On the Centenary of the Discovery of Insulin, 10 years after the first European Parliament Motion for Resolution on diabetes, let’s stop ignoring the 170,000 children and the 32 million adults living with the disease in the European Union (EU) and the millions more on their way to developing it. Let’s re-design health systems, which build on the effective prevention and management of diabetes and other chronic diseases, to guarantee their own resilience, improve EU citizens’ quality of life and reduce inequalities.
Nobody is immune to diabetes
The situation is urgent and getting worse. Lacking or ineffective research and policy action over many decades has resulted in an ever-increasing number of European citizens from all ages and walks of life living with diabetes and other chronic conditions and developing life-altering complications. Not only does this result in poor quality of life for many of the people living with these conditions but it also jeopardises the health and well-being of future generations.
The COVID-19 pandemic has demonstrated the impact of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) on health systems. The quality of diabetes (and other NCDs) prevention and management is a marker of this future resilience.
To a greater extent than for any other NCD, diabetes prevention, management and care touch on all aspects of a national health system, making it a marker of quality, effectiveness, performance and resilience. Effective prevention and management of diabetes will keep users away from the healthcare system, lower costs, improve resource utilisation and contribute to health systems’ digitalisation, thereby shoring up the resilience of national healthcare systems. It will also improve citizens’ quality of life and reduce inequalities. It will benefit not just PwD and those at risk of diabetes but also all people living with, or at risk of, other NCDs and conditions.
EU policy action lacks the required leadership. Policy action is not recognising the scale and urgency of the crisis
To achieve impact on diabetes across Europe, we need stronger, strategic leadership from the EU, with an ambitious Diabetes Plan accompanied by a Diabetes Mission, with clear and fully coordinated milestones, targets and responsibilities, accompanying and leveraging the myriad excellent EU initiatives such as the Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan and the European Health Data Space, and working in close collaboration with Member States and other stakeholders.
Read more about the rationale for a new European Parliament Diabetes Resolution:
Donwload the presentation here
The full document and the executive summary of the rationale for a new European Parliament Diabetes Resolution are also available to download here:
Click here to read about the European Parliament adopting a new Diabetes Resolution on November 23.
Events leading up to the resolution
European Parliament Lunch Debate – Towards a new Diabetes Resolution: The Time to Act is Now!
12 October, 11.00-13.00 – Room ASP 3H1
Event hosted by MEP István Ujhelyi
Ahead of World Diabetes Day 2022 and to mobilise political support for a new Diabetes Resolution, IDF Europe and MEPs Mobilising for Diabetes held a lunch debate at the European Parliament in Brussels, hosted by MEP István Ujhelyi. MEP Ujhelyi has been a long-standing supporter of the diabetes cause and a strong ally of the diabetes community.
During the event, diabetes advocates shared real life stories of living with diabetes and reflected on the urgent need for a new Diabetes Resolution in 2022. This was followed by an MEP panel discussion and a blood glucose testing outside the event venue.
The event was moderated by Cajsa Lindberg, public health advocate and IDF Europe adviser
- Introduction and objectives of the meeting – MEP Istvan Ujhelyi (S&D, Hungary)
- Why acting on diabetes is not simply a one-disease approach, but benefits all healthcare users through better designed healthcare systems – Chris Delicata, President of the Maltese Diabetes Association
- Diabetes Resolution through storytelling of people living with diabetes:
– Diabetes advocate – Veerle Vanhuyse
– Diabetes advocate – Cameron Keighron
– Diabetes advocate – Konstantinos Tagkalos
- Panel discussion – MEP views and PwD priorities for the new Diabetes Resolution
– MEP Tomislav Sokol (EPP, Croatia)
– MEP Romana Jerković (S&D, Croatia)
– Chris Delicata
– Veerle Vanhuyse
– Cameron Keighron
– Konstantinos Tagkalos
- Closing remarks and call for MEPs to support the new Diabetes Resolution – MEP Istvan Ujhelyi
European Parliament Breakfast Symposium on World Diabetes Day 2022 – Improving diabetes care for more resilient healthcare systems
15 November, 8.00 – 9.00 – European Parliament, Brussels (Room SPINELLI 3H1)
Event co-hosted by MEP Sirpa Pietikäinen and MEP Christel Schaldemose
Every year, World Diabetes Day is an important occasion to raise awareness of the escalating health threat posed by diabetes and nudge policy-makers to address the diabetes epidemic and improve citizens’ quality of life at the European, national, and local levels.
This year’s theme is Access to Diabetes Care: If Not Now, When? Achieving the best possible health outcomes and enjoying the highest possible quality of life for people living with diabetes is contingent upon their ability to access the medicines, supplies, technologies and care they require on an uninterrupted basis. The COVID-19 pandemic has clearly demonstrated the inherent inequalities in access to care across and within EU countries, and the impact of non-communicable diseases (NCDs) on health systems. Because of the complexity of diabetes, its interplay with other conditions, and with all levels of care, diabetes is a marker of the future resilience of national healthcare systems. The quality and effectiveness of diabetes prevention, management and care not only benefit people living with diabetes but represent a measure of how well a healthcare system is performing and benefits all NCDs.
During the Breakfast Symposium, various diabetes stakeholders discussed how we can address the striking disparities in access to care, themselves leading to significant inequalities in health outcomes for European citizens, and improve care and management across all NCDs to build up the resilience of health systems.
- Opening remarks – MEP Christel Schaldemose
- COVID-19 lessons: improving diabetes management, prevention and care to absorb health crises and build the future resilience of healthcare systems. – Joao Raposo, Assistant Professor of Public Health in the Medical Faculty of New University of Lisbon and Clinical Director of APDP – Diabetes Portugal
- Improved resilience for reduced health disparities across the Union. – Jean Langford, person living with Type 1 diabetes
- Panel discussion: What policy changes are required at EU level?
– MEP Marisa Matias (the Left)
– MEP Tilly Metz (Greens)
– MEP Sirpa Pietikainen (EPP)
– MEP Christel Schaldemose (S&D)
- Closing remarks – MEP Sirpa Pietikainen
Exhibition: “A journey through the history of diabetes on the centenary of the discovery of insulin”
21-24 November – European Parliament, Strasbourg
Event hosted by MEP Romana Jerković
As part of our initiatives to raise awareness of the urgent need for a new European Parliament Diabetes Resolution and to celebrate the Centenary of the discovery of insulin, on November 21-24, we held an exhibition on the history of diabetes hosted by MEP Romana Jerković at the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
At the exhibition, visitors were able to read about the history of the discovery of insulin and the new treatments and technologies developed since. With the discovery of insulin, diabetes became a treatable disease but there remains much more to be done to ensure best possible health outcomes and quality of life.
Click here to visit the virtual exhibition on our website dedicated to the Centenary of the Discovery of Insulin.
We thank our partners, Air Liquide, Boehringer Ingelheim and Lilly Diabetes for their support to IDF Europe World Diabetes Day events and to our call for a new European Parliament Diabetes Resolution.