Novo Nordisk and Entertainment Industries Council Work Together to Improve Public Education and Awareness about Diabetes Epidemic

Leading Up to Diabetes Awareness Month in November Partnership Aims to Address Localized Diabetes Priorities in Seattle and Philadelphia

Oct 22, 2010, 10:00 ET from Novo Nordisk

PRINCETON, N.J., Oct. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Novo Nordisk, a world leader in diabetes care, and the Entertainment Industries Council (EIC) are launching a collaborative project to enhance dialogue among local diabetes experts, policy makers and the media to improve public awareness of the key issues associated with diabetes management.  

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The locally-based effort will include Picture This forums, hosted in collaboration with KING-TV (NBC) in Seattle and WPVI-TV (ABC) in Philadelphia. The forums include an open discussion among diabetes stakeholders and the media to identify top diabetes communication challenges, explore strategies to address those priorities and strengthen community understanding about diabetes through news media and community affairs programs.  Currently, 7% of the Seattle population and 13% of the Philadelphia population is living with diabetes.(1,2)

"Novo Nordisk is proud to join EIC, the media and community leaders in Seattle and Philadelphia to explore ways to improve how diabetes is communicated about and understood by local citizens," said Dr. Tony Deluzio, Senior Medical Director at Novo Nordisk. "As the prevalence of diabetes continues to be on the rise, bringing together those on the frontline of diabetes care will open the potential to reduce the stigma associated with diabetes and empower those affected by the disease to lead full and productive lives."

James Avery, an actor best known for his role as Phillip Banks, the uncle of Will Smith's character on The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, will participate in the Seattle and Philadelphia forums as a celebrity ambassador to the initiative.  Mr. Avery, who is living with type 2 diabetes, hopes that his participation will elevate diabetes to top-of-mind status in the media and inspire stories about the real issues faced by the diabetes community.  

"Having lived with type 2 diabetes for over 15 years, I understand the challenges patients face with overall diabetes management and taking control of the disease," said Avery.  "I am supporting Picture This because the community will benefit from more informed news reporting on diabetes issues that matter to patients."

The Picture This forums will take place on Friday, October 22, 2010, at KING-TV (NBC) studios in Seattle and on Thursday, November 18, 2010, at the studios of WPVI-TV (ABC) in Philadelphia.

"The Picture This forums drive an open dialogue between thought leaders and the media community to dispel diabetes myths and accurately depict the realities of this public health challenge," said Brian Dyak, President & CEO, Entertainment Industries Council. "Our goal is to establish ongoing relationships to determine the most pressing diabetes-related concerns in Seattle and Philadelphia and address those priorities through news coverage and community service activities."

About Diabetes

Every 21 seconds another American is diagnosed with diabetes.(3)  Nearly 24 million Americans have diabetes and another 57 million have diabetes and are at risk for developing the disease.(4)  On its current course, the number of people with diabetes is projected to nearly double to 44.1 million by 2034 due in large part to the aging of the baby boomer population and increased rates of overweight Americans and obesity.(5)

Diabetes cannot yet be cured, but it can be managed.  With the proper diet, exercise, regular blood sugar testing and treatment therapy, people living with diabetes can lead full and active lives. If left unmanaged, diabetes can lead to severe health complications, including blindness, kidney disease, foot amputations, heart disease and stroke.  Insulin therapy, discovered nearly 90 years ago, remains one of the most significant discoveries in the field of medicine and continues to be a mainstay of diabetes treatment as a way to reduce the risk of developing serious complications.(6)

Diabetes in Seattle

In 2010, over 233,500 people living in Seattle have diabetes.  About 51.400 of them have not yet been diagnosed.  Another 645,600 people in Seattle have pre-diabetes, a condition in which the blood sugar level is higher than normal but not yet in the range for diabetes.  The overall costs of diabetes for the Seattle Metro Area will be $2.4 billion in 2010.  Based on current forecasts, the number of people with diabetes in the Seattle Metro Area will increase to over 392,000 by 2025.(7)

Diabetes in Philadelphia

According to the Public Health Management Corporation Household Health Survey, conducted in 2008, 13% of adults in Philadelphia have identified with ever having diabetes.(8)

About Novo Nordisk

Novo Nordisk is a global healthcare company with 87 years of innovation and leadership in diabetes care. The company also has leading positions within hemophilia care, growth hormone therapy and hormone therapy for women. Novo Nordisk's business is driven by the Triple Bottom Line: a commitment to social responsibility to employees and customers, environmental soundness and economic success. Headquartered in Denmark, Novo Nordisk employs approximately 29,890 employees in 76 countries, and markets its products in 179 countries. Novo Nordisk's B shares are listed on NASDAQ OMX Copenhagen (Novo-B). Its ADRs are listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NVO). For more information, visit

About Entertainment Industries Council (EIC)

A non-profit organization, EIC was founded in 1983 by leaders of the entertainment industry to bring the power of the industry to bear on health and social issues. The organization is considered one of the premiere success stories in entertainment education and information resources for entertainment creators, through innovative and time-proven services and methods of "encouraging the art of making a difference" from within the industry.

EIC addresses health issues such as drug, alcohol, and tobacco use and addiction; firearm safety and injury prevention; sun safety and skin cancer prevention; human trafficking; terrorism and homeland security; mental health and mental illness, including bipolar disorder, depression and suicide; diabetes; seat belt use and traffic safety; and HIV/AIDS prevention. For more information, please visit

(1) Institute for Alternative Futures, Diabetes 2025 Forecasts, September 201.  Seattle Metropolitan Area Diabetes Data Summary (Including Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue).


(3) American Diabetes Association. I Decide to Fight Diabetes Fact Sheet. Accessed at:

(4) 007 National Diabetes Fact Sheet. Centers for Disease Control Web site.

(5) Huang et al (2009) Projecting the Future Diabetes Population Size and Related Costs for the U.S. Diabetes Care, December 2009,Vol. 32, No 12, 2225-2229

(6) Dall et al.  The Economic Burden of Diabetes. Health Affairs. 29, NO. 2 (2010)

(7) 2025 Diabetes Forecasts for State and Metropolitan Areas Study by the Institute for Alternative Futures –  utilizes a national model from Narayan, Impact of Recent Increase in Incidence on Future Diabetes Burden, Diabetes Care 2006;29:2114-2116; US Census Bureau population estimates; latest CDC national diabetes statistics and state prevalence rates; and ADA and Lewin Group diabetes costs – go to for details


SOURCE Novo Nordisk