Prevalencei of diabetes (20–79 years), 2019
Prevalencei of diabetes (20–79 years), 2019

Source: International Diabetes Federation Europe

European Region of the International Diabetes Federation

Improved funding and training for nurses as key players in resilient health systems

How extraordinary it is that the 200th anniversary of the birth of Florence Nightingale, the founder of modern nursing, is celebrated on the year of the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Her key nursing values – including regularly washing hands and maintaining good hygiene – and her pioneering work in statistics and data collection have proven more relevant than ever.

Since the beginning of 2020, more than 12.5 million cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Europe[i] and in 2019 close to 60 million people in Europe were living with diabetes[ii]. The interaction between these two devastating pandemics carries a heavy burden for people living with diabetes who are at higher risk of severe clinical outcomes of COVID-19. It also highlights the need for a systemic transformation of our healthcare systems to ensure equitable access and support for quality diabetes care across Europe. Today, on World Diabetes Day, IDF Europe would like to pay tribute to all healthcare professionals who are on the frontline and to celebrate the nurses who represent a vital force for change that the system needs.

Nurses play a key role in supporting the optimal management of diabetes and the delivery of personalised diabetes care, in providing self-management training and psychological support for people living with diabetes as well as in educating people on the modifiable risk factors for type 2 diabetes and how to lower the risks of developing the condition. Commenting on the role of nurses, IDF Europe Chair, Dr Niti Pall said: “For many people living with diabetes the need for a trusted advocate, professional friend allows for a better experience and outcome of diabetes care. Many of us will have stories to tell about this vital role that nurses will have played in the individual diabetes journey. We pay homage to them in this international year of the nurse and ask for policy makers across Europe to recognise this role, invest in training and development of this vital resource and make it mandatory for health systems to show that progress is being made to incorporate multidisciplinary teams at the heart of delivery of diabetes care.”

Source: International Diabetes Federation Europe

14.11.2020

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