The DAWN programme is the largest global survey ever to uncover diabetes attitudes, wishes and needs. The study focused on the person behind the disease and aimed to uncover the psychosocial aspects of diabetes. It was initiated by Novo Nordisk in 2001 and conducted in collaboration with the International Diabetes Federation and an expert advisory board.
In all, the study involved more than 5,400 people with diabetes and more than 3,800 healthcare professionals from 13 countries. It has now evolved into a programme calling for concerted action to improve diabetes care.
Today, more than 30 countries run the DAWN programme, involving academic research, educational programmes and new approaches to treatment at hospitals and clinics.
There are many psychological problems associated with diabetes. Yet healthcare professionals acknowledge that they lack the resources to deal with them appropriately and point to a major gap in terms of patient-centred communication involving the entire care team.
This was among the findings of the Novo Nordisk DAWN (Diabetes Attitudes, Wishes and Needs) study, which led to the global, multi-stakeholder DAWN programme.
DAWN Youth supports young people with diabetes
2008 was the UN Year of the Child and to celebrate this, the DAWN initiative has focused on establishing national efforts for improved health and quality of life of children with diabetes in more than 10 countries world-wide.
DAWN Youth is a new global initiative, in partnership with the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and the International Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Diabetes (ISPAD). The DAWN Youth facilitates advocacy, research and action to improve the lives of young people with diabetes and their families.
In an effort to discover what it will take to build strong support systems for young people with diabetes, one of the main activities in DAWN Youth was the survey conducted in 2007 and finalised in January 2008 including more than 6,800 respondents. The survey examines the attitudes, wishes and needs of young people as well as their families, healthcare professionals, peer groups and others close to young people on an international scale to guide international as well as national initiatives.
The findings of the DAWN Youth survey were presented at an international media roundtable hosted by Novo Nordisk and ISPAD in Rome in September 2008. At the media event 80 journalists were present and following the event several articles across the world have been focusing on the alarming findings in relation to diabetes at school. More than half of children with diabetes do not manage their diabetes successfully in school. The kids feel ill, lose their concentration or even suffer from an insulin shock, which can be fatal if not treated on the spot. Present at the media roundtable in Rome were a unique host of stakeholders from policy makers, to young people with diabetes and their families and healthcare professionals. All of them committed to support the fight for securing equal access to education and a safe environment for all children with diabetes.
Later during 2008 other key results from the survey were presented at the ISPAD congress in South Africa and 4th DAWN Summit in Hungary focusing on the need for action in relation to: Family & Parent Support, Peer Support & Networking, Healthcare System & Professionals, and Obesity & Type 2 diabetes – read more about action areas of DAWN Youth here.
The DAWN Youth survey has been forming the basis for national or local efforts to address the unique needs and wishes of people with diabetes. A range of examples of such activities can be viewed on the DAWN Youth Website at www.dawnyouth.com.
DAWN Youth is another demonstration of Novo Nordisk’s commitment to changing the course of diabetes by addressing the person behind the disease.
Novo Nordisk approach
The global DAWN programme, conducted in collaboration with the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), is an ongoing advocacy and action programme driven by Novo Nordisk to promote people-centred diabetes care and overcome the psychosocial barriers to effective self-management.
The DAWN programme provides an international framework for advocacy, guidelines, practical tools and best practice across the world. This includes national 'train-the-trainer' programmes for primary care physicians on the psychological aspect of care, and quality-of-life questionnaires for people with diabetes that several countries now incorporate in routine health evaluations. In addition, four international summits have been held to increase awareness and encourage debate and action on the issue – read about the DAWN Summits here.
DAWN-related activities are an integral part of the Novo Nordisk’s Changing Diabetes® programme and are being carried out by Novo Nordisk and partners in more than 49 countries.