The People's Republic of Bangladesh and the United Nations Receive The American Diabetes Association's Distinguished Service Award

November 19, 2007


— Two Vital Forces Presented with the Charles H. Best Medal —

ALEXANDRIA, VA (November 19, 2007) – The American Diabetes Association (ADA), the nation’s leading voluntary health organization in the fight against diabetes, announced today that the People’s Republic of Bangladesh and the United Nations (UN) received the Association's prestigious Charles H. Best Medal for Distinguished Service in the Cause of Diabetes at the organization’s Community Volunteer Leadership Conference and Annual Meeting on November 17, in St. Louis, Missouri.  The award was accepted by Her Excellency Ms. Ismat Jahan, Permanent Representative of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh to the United Nations.

The Charles H. Best Medal for Distinguished Service in the Cause of Diabetes is named for Dr. Best, the co-discoverer of insulin.  The award honors distinguished services in the field of diabetes, including both scientific and nonscientific endeavors.

"On behalf of the American Diabetes Association, we are honored to present this prestigious award to the People’s Republic of Bangladesh and the United Nations for their efforts to make every citizen of the world aware about diabetes," commented John Buse, MD, PhD, President, Medicine & Science, American Diabetes Association.  “The adoption of the World Diabetes Day Resolution would not have been possible without their involvement.”

On December 20, 2006, the United Nations General Assembly passed the World Diabetes Day Resolution, designating November 14, the current World Diabetes Day, as a United Nations Day.  Observed for the first time this November, the resolution recognizes the seriousness of diabetes on a global scale while emphasizing the urgent need to promote and improve human health and provide access to treatment and health care education through multilateral efforts.

When the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) contemplated the concept of a UN World Diabetes Day, Bangladesh welcomed the challenge.  The permanent Mission to the UN in New York worked untiringly with IDF, ultimately resulting in the largest ever diabetes coalition in the world.  The World Diabetes Day Resolution makes diabetes the only disease other than AIDS having its own UN Resolution and UN observed World Day.

The designation of a special day is not an end to itself; it is just the beginning.  The ultimate objective is to make every citizen of the world aware of diabetes – how to prevent, how to manage, how to cope, and how to care.  To this end, the world has come together, motivated by the same unity of purpose, and solid resolve.

Diabetes is a serious disease that affects the body’s ability to produce or respond properly to insulin, a hormone that allows blood glucose (sugar) to enter the cells of the body and be used for energy.  Diabetes currently affects 246 million people globally, including nearly 21 million children and adults in the United States.  Diabetes is the fifth leading cause of death by disease in the United States and it has no cure.

About the ADA
The American Diabetes Association is the nation’s premier voluntary health organization supporting diabetes research, information and advocacy.  Founded in 1940, the Association has offices in every region of the country, providing services to hundreds of communities.  The Association’s commitment to research is reflected through its scientific meetings; education and provider recognition programs; and its Research Foundation and Nationwide Research Program, which fund breakthrough studies looking into the cure, prevention, and treatment of diabetes and its complications.  For more information, visit or call 800-DIABETES (800-342-2383).

About the American Diabetes Association

Nearly half of American adults have diabetes or prediabetes; more than 30 million adults and children have diabetes; and every 21 seconds, another individual is diagnosed with diabetes in the U.S. Founded in 1940, the American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization whose mission is to prevent and cure diabetes, and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. The ADA drives discovery by funding research to treat, manage and prevent all types of diabetes, as well as to search for cures; raises voice to the urgency of the diabetes epidemic; and works to safeguard policies and programs that protect people with diabetes. In addition, the ADA supports people living with diabetes, those at risk of developing diabetes, and the health care professionals who serve them through information and programs that can improve health outcomes and quality of life. For more information, please call the ADA at 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383) or visit Information from both of these sources is available in English and Spanish. Find us on Facebook (American Diabetes Association), Twitter (@AmDiabetesAssn) and Instagram (@AmDiabetesAssn)