New York City, NY [April 7, 2016] – On this World Health Day 2016, JDRF, the leading charitable funder and advocate of type 1 diabetes (T1D) research worldwide, applauds the decision of the World Health Organization (WHO) to dedicate this day to diabetes. The WHO wants to increase worldwide awareness of the urgent need to defeat this chronic disease and its devastating consequences for both the individuals who must bear this daily burden, and the health systems faced with the disease’s staggering economic impact.

“We are grateful for the opportunity to share the World Health Organization’s quest to increase worldwide awareness of diabetes. JDRF is committed to our mission to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications,” said Derek Rapp, JDRF President & Chief Executive Officer. “We are proud of our work to influence other organizations—from companies to nonprofits to governments in Australia, Canada, Denmark, Israel, Netherlands, the U.S. and the U.K.—to fund T1D research and advocate for removing regulatory and commercial barriers to new life-changing therapies.”

According to many conservative estimates, 500 to 600 million people worldwide will be living with one of the two forms of diabetes (type 1 and type 2) by 2030. The WHO is calling for a coordinated response to the rapid rise of diabetes through a set of specific actions to prevent and diagnose the disease, and treat and provide better, more affordable, and more access to care for people with diabetes, in an effort to eliminate the complications of this disease.

Some 90 percent of diabetes cases worldwide will be type 2 diabetes, which may be preventable through lifestyle and diet changes. However, people in the other 10 percent are people living with insulin-dependent type 1 diabetes, and the onset of T1D has nothing to do with either diet or lifestyle. T1D is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas stops producing insulin, a hormone people need to get energy from food. T1D strikes both children and adults at any age and suddenly. Though T1D’s causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers play a role. There is currently nothing one can do to prevent it, and there is no cure.

For over 45 years, JDRF has been working tirelessly to ensure the T1D community is not forgotten, funding world class researchers, life-changing human clinical trials, and consortiums of corporate and industry partners aiming to develop and market technological or pharmacological solutions that are safe, efficient and affordable. JDRF’s approach is truly global, accelerating the most promising research worldwide. This footprint allows JDRF to have a broader view of the global research landscape to bring these discoveries to the T1D community faster.

Founded in 1970 by parents of children who live with T1D, JDRF is still led by committed staff and volunteers who share a deeply personal connection to T1D. From developing an artificial pancreas system to establishing clinical protocols that make it possible to sidestep immune attacks, or regenerate—or replace—insulin-producing cells, JDRF continues to shape its vision of a world without type 1 diabetes.

“To ensure that Canada continues to be a global leader and centre of excellence for diabetes research, we need to accelerate more life-changing research even faster to transform the lives of over 300,000 Canadians and their families who have to cope with the daily challenges of living with T1D,” said Dave Prowten, President & CEO of JDRF Canada. “Continuing our rich tradition of diabetes innovations, from the discovery of insulin to islet cell transplantation, Canada is at the forefront of many technological and scientific breakthroughs. JDRF-funded researchers need the continued support of generous Canadian donors in order to give the T1D community the quality of life they deserve and need.”

JDRF wants millions of children, teenagers and adults to live with no needles and no daily insulin injections, a life free from the constant threat of significant and potentially fatal complications. To this end, JDRF is urging opinion leaders, policy-makers, economic players, and the global philanthropy community to support its mission of accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications.

About JDRF
JDRF is the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Our mission is to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications. To accomplish this, JDRF has invested nearly $2 billion in research funding since our inception. We are an organization built on a grassroots model of people connecting in their local communities, collaborating regionally for efficiency and broader fundraising impact, and uniting on a national stage to pool resources, passion, and energy. We collaborate with academic institutions, policymakers, and corporate and industry partners to develop and deliver a pipeline of innovative therapies to people living with T1D. Our staff and volunteers in more than 100 locations throughout the United States and our six international affiliates are dedicated to advocacy, community engagement and our vision of a world without T1D. For more information, please visit jdrf.org or follow us on Twitter: @JDRF.

JDRF Media Contact:​

Julie Andaloro 
National Manager, Communications and Public Relations 
[email protected] 

Lets turn type one into type none