World Diabetes Day 2017 – Women and diabetes- our right to a healthy future.

Posted on November 14th, 2017 by Dr. Indira Gauthaman


World Diabetes Day is being held on Novemeber 14th every year since 1991 andis the global awareness campaign focusing on diabetes mellitus. The campaign itself lasts for the whole year. November 14th marks the birthday of Frederick Banting who along with Charles Best and and John James did research which led to the discovery of insulin in 1922.

World Diabetes Day 2017

World Diabetes Day was launched in 1991 by the IDF and the World Health Organisation (WHO) in response to the rapid rise of diabetes around the world.

Every year a new theme is selected.

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 behaviour for women, and amplify the impact of diabetes on women.

  • Diabetes is the ninth leading cause of death in women globally, causing 2.1 million deaths each year.

  • As a result of socioeconomic conditions, girls and women with diabetes experience barriers in accessing cost-effective diabetes prevention, early detection, diagnosis, treatment and care, particularly in developing countries. Socioeconomic inequalities expose women to the main risk factors for 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.

Girls and women with diabetes 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.

Themes of previous World Diabetes Day campaigns have focused on different factors that influence the risk of diabetes and its complications:

  • 2017: Women and diabetes – our right to a healthy future.

  • 2016: Eyes on Diabetes.

  • 2015: Healthy Eating.

  • 2014: Go Blue for Breakfast.

  • 2013: Protect our Future: Diabetes Education and Prevention.

Reference: World Diabetes Day