In 1922, the very first insulin injection was given to a young patient at Toronto General Hospital, revolutionizing diabetes treatment and the world of medicine.
Almost a century later, diabetes remains a complex and significant healthcare crisis. Its complications can be devastating. Diabetes affects every organ system and is a major cause of disabilities and premature death.
As we look ahead to the next century, diabetes can and must be defeated. UHN has the knowledge, leadership and drive to achieve this vision.
The Diabetes Program at UHN is one of the largest programs of its kind in Canada, with our physicians, nurses, dietitians and pharmacists among the top diabetes specialists in the world.
In addition to the exceptional clinical care provided through the Division of Endocrinology and Metabolism, our diabetes clinicians and scientists are working hand in hand to accelerate discoveries that will lead to new treatments.
We are part of a cluster of experts in prestigious national organizations that have a shared goal of ending the diabetes epidemic. These include two external partners hosted at UHN:
- Banting & Best Diabetes Centre at University of Toronto (BBDC): bringing together over 200 researchers and health professionals to lead discoveries both in Canada and around the world
- Diabetes Action Canada: a patient-oriented national research network established to transform care for people living with diabetes and its related complications, with a strong focus on vulnerable and underserved populations such as new immigrants, seniors and Indigenous communities
We need donor support to advance diabetes care, research and education – both in Canada and around the world.
- Improve diabetes care and reduce the most feared, yet preventable complications like blindness, kidney failure, amputations, and cardiovascular disease
- Build the most comprehensive, multi-specialty program to heal wounds and decrease the rate of lower limb amputations in people with diabetes
- Harness the power of digital health (devices, data analytics, electronic communication tools and services) to support patients in self-management, prevent complications, enhance clinical research, and improve communication between patients, care providers and government
- Build better mental health supports for people living with diabetes
- Continue to build on the legacy of discovery toward an ambitious goal –be able to predict, prevent and cure diabetes
- Create personalized approaches to diabetes treatment that address the complex nature of the disease, including the origins of insulin resistance and tissue metabolism
- Unravel the biologic, biochemical and genetic processes that underlie the development of Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and their devastating complications
- Stimulate more translational research and accelerate how quickly we move from lab to patient
- Support the next generation of scientists to nurture and advance new discoveries by providing them with funds to innovate and uncover new treatments
Shannon Carkner, CFRE