gwen's blog

Stephen Gough: ‘What can we do for the people who are not getting care?’

As a young diabetes specialist in England’s West Midlands, Dr Stephen Gough was drawn to an important – if low-status – challenge: healing and preventing new wounds in diabetic feet.  

"Diabetic foot disease can be a neglected area of care even in the UK. Many consider feet to be smelly and dirty, and best avoided! No one really wanted to look after them,” he recalls. 

Stephen Gough joins WDF Board of Directors

BAGSVÆRD, DENMARK – The World Diabetes Foundation today announces the constitution of a new Board of Directors. The Board consists of Dr Anil Kapur (Chair), Ms Camilla Sylvest (Vice-chair), Ms Ida Nicolaisen, Dr Kaushik Ramaiya, Prof Abdallah Daar, Mr Frederik Kier and Dr Stephen Gough. 
Stephen Gough, MD, FRCP, joined Novo Nordisk A/S in 2015, based in Copenhagen to provide medical guidance on the development of new molecules and drugs for the treatment of diabetes and obesity. In 2018, he became Senior Vice President and Global Chief Medical Officer.

WDF funds 17 new projects in 2019

WDF signed contracts funding a total of 17 new projects around the world in 2019. Four of them were announced in June, and the remaining 13 are listed below.

The projects illustrate the global scope of the WDF’s partnerships, taking place in all regions and covering a wide variety of focus areas.

New projects signed in 2019

‘Healthy Family, Fit India’ campaign reaches millions

More than 15,000 people gathered to see the bodybuilders, Zumba dancers and military cadets and receive a free blood glucose screening.  Many joined group yoga exercises, helped create a human blue circle in honour of World Diabetes Day, and participated in a Global Diabetes Walk. 

After a busy and thought-provoking day, participants left pledging to improve their health. Younger participants spoke of taking their new yoga skills home to teach their elders.

Camilla Sylvest: ‘We must help society rise to its biggest challenges’

Camilla Sylvest first heard of the World Diabetes Foundation in 2001. She was a young manager in Novo Nordisk’s Pricing and Pharmacoeconomics department at the time and had been asked to create a new pricing policy for less-developed countries. Along the way, she met Leif Fenger Jensen and the rest of the small team tasked with creating the WDF. Both initiatives were part of an ambitious new social responsibility strategy that aimed to improve diabetes prevention and care in the developing world.

In Colombia, a focus on family and diabetes gets results

When Humberto Mendoza Charris wanted to talk about diabetes in the late 1990s, it was often hard to find an audience. 

“Diabetes was perceived as a second- or third-order challenge, a disease of the upper and middle classes. There was a lot of ignorance about the suffering caused by its complications and its high costs to the health system,” recalls Mr Charris, Medical advisor for Public Health in the Mayor’s office of Barranquilla, Colombia.