International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

International Diabetes Federation (IDF)

March 05, 2009 07:01 ET

Canada to Host Diabetes Mega-Congress

The International Diabetes Federation brings its World Diabetes Congress to Montreal in October, with over 15,000 people expected to attend.

MONTREAL, QUEBEC and BRUSSELS, BELGIUM--(Marketwire - March 5, 2009) - Almost 90 years ago, the Canadian medical scientist Sir Frederick Banting and a team working at the University of Toronto made the research breakthrough that resulted in the discovery of insulin. Hailed as a miracle drug at the time of its discovery, insulin remains an essential, life-saving treatment for people with type 1 diabetes. This historic connection as the birthplace of insulin is one of the reasons that the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) selected Canada as the ideal location for its 20th World Diabetes Congress.

Held in cooperation with the Canadian Diabetes Association and Diabete Quebec, the 20th World Diabetes Congress in Montreal will be one of the world's largest medical conferences - a mega-event that is expected to attract over 15,000 delegates to the city from October 18 to 22, 2009. Key opinion leaders from the global diabetes community - from over 160 countries - will converge on Montreal to discuss the burning issues in diabetes.

Organized by the International Diabetes Federation every two years, the World Diabetes Congress will highlight the latest developments in clinical research, showcase new data on the diabetes pandemic, and promote political action to tackle diabetes. Health ministers and officials will join the world's leading diabetes experts to share knowledge, experiences and innovative solutions to address the diabetes threat.

"The World Diabetes Congress is the premier gathering of the global diabetes community. It is an honour and a privilege to bring the congress to a place of such historical importance to the diabetes world. We will be covering a wide range of diabetes-related issues, topics and so much more, making the event bigger and better than ever," said Dr. Linda Siminerio, Chair of the IDF Congress Organizing Committee.

The Congress will be held at the Palais des Congres de Montreal and will feature a 12,000 sq m exhibition area. Delegates and exhibitors will not only spend the week sharing information, catching up with old friends, and making new ones, but also provide a welcome boost to the local economy as they enjoy the hospitality, fine dining and sightseeing opportunities that make Montreal such an attractive venue.

"We are thrilled that the IDF has chosen Montreal, a leader in the life sciences, to host the prestigious 20th World Diabetes Congress," says Charles Lapointe, President and CEO of Tourisme Montreal. "We look forward to welcoming these thousands of WDC delegates and sharing the excitement of our city, from its gourmet dining to its shopping and culture, to a downtown that hums with round-the-clock action. It will be at least another decade before this distinguished meeting is held in North America again, so we intend to roll out the red carpet and leave our guests with unforgettable Montreal memories."

Diabetes in Canada

North America has one of the highest prevalence rates of diabetes in the world, with over 9% of the adult population living with diabetes. In Canada, 9.3% of adults currently have diabetes and this figure is expected to rise to 11.1% by 2025 according to IDF.

According to the Canadian Diabetes Association and Diabete Quebec more than 2.4 million Canadians are living with diabetes. In addition, more than 6 million Canadians have pre-diabetes, placing them at significant risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Particularly alarming is that nearly 80 percent of new Canadians arrive from populations at high risk of diabetes (Asian, South Asian, African, or Hispanic descent).

"As the birthplace of hope for the millions affected by diabetes around the world, Canada is proud to host the International Diabetes Federation's 20th World Diabetes Congress this October," said Ellen Malcolmson, President and CEO, Canadian Diabetes Association. "Our founder, Charles Best, the co-discoverer of insulin, saw that the growing numbers of Canadians with diabetes required an organization to serve their needs. Today, diabetes is nothing short of a global pandemic. By bringing thought leaders together in Montreal, IDF is serving the needs of the global community and ultimately, the people who are striving to live healthy lives while we search for a cure."

"The prevalence of diabetes is growing at a faster rate than expected around the world." said Serge Langlois, President and CEO of Diabete Quebec, "Over the years, our organization has expended tremendous efforts to raise awareness about this reality: by educating persons living with diabetes as well as the health care professionals involved; by providing access to the right treatment and by assisting in the fight against discrimination toward those affected. This World Diabetes Congress will focus on such issues and therefore, we are proud to welcome to Montreal, people of the world who are sharing in the ongoing fight against diabetes."

With over 250 million worldwide with diabetes and 380 million expected by 2025, the fight against the diabetes epidemic continues. The World Diabetes Congress is the place to join that fight. "Canada holds a special place in the heart of the diabetes community. We welcome the participation of people living with diabetes and have sessions dedicated to them. The World Diabetes Congress is a unique event for everyone affected by diabetes and concerned with making a difference to improve diabetes care," said Dr. Siminerio.

To find out more about the World Diabetes Congress and to register to take advantage of early rates ending 30 April 2009, please visit www.worlddiabetescongress.org.

Link to all organization logos - http://www.box.net/shared/qkbcvcqhrx

Note to Editors

The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) is an umbrella organization of over 200 member associations in more than 160 countries, representing over 250 million people with diabetes, their families, and their healthcare providers. The mission of IDF is to promote diabetes care, prevention and a cure worldwide. Its main activities include education for people with diabetes and healthcare professionals, public awareness campaigns and the promotion and exchange of information. IDF is a non-governmental organization in official relations with WHO and associated to the United Nations' Department of Public Information. For more information, please visit www.idf.org.

About the Canadian Diabetes Association

The Canadian Diabetes Association works in communities across the country to promote the health of Canadians and eliminate diabetes through our strong nationwide network of volunteers, employees, healthcare professionals, researchers, partners and supporters. In the struggle against this global epidemic, our expertise is recognized around the world. The Canadian Diabetes Association: setting the world standard. To learn more, visit diabetes.ca.

About DQ

For over 50 years, Diabetes Quebec has been informing the Quebec public about the disease and raising its awareness of diabetes. The association was involved in prevention activities. This insidious disease now affects more than 650,000 Quebecers. Its incidence has been rising at an epidemic rate and is taking a heavy economic toll. The province now spends more than $3 billion a year in direct and indirect healthcare costs related to this disease. To learn more, visit www.diabete.qc.ca.

About Tourism Montreal

Tourisme Montreal is responsible for providing leadership in the concerted efforts of hospitality and promotion in order to position the destination on leisure and business travel markets. It is also responsible for developing Montreal's tourism product in accordance with the ever-changing conditions of the market. Montreal ranks first in Canada and second in North America, after New York, for hosting international meetings. In addition to generating important economic spin-offs, business meetings and conventions have created 18,000 jobs in Montreal, whose numerous advantages make it the ideal host city for meetings from all industry sectors. To learn more visit: www.tourisme-montreal.org.

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