Cities Changing Diabetes weekly update

This is our weekly update from the CCD Director, Steffan Nielsen

Dear all

On this day three years ago I joined Cities Changing Diabetes. It has been three great years and to me it calls for some reflection. Back then we hadn’t finalised the vulnerability studies in the first cities and action plans were hardly thought of. Since then we have published a lot of results, we have shared what we have learnt with each other at two summits in Copenhagen and Houston, we have said hello to ten new cities and we have initiated a lot of great initiatives that is benefitting the health in the cities. It makes me really proud what we have achieved together.

Today in this update I have a great menu of activities that have happened in the world of Cities Changing Diabetes the last couple of weeks and we start in Madrid.

Madrid will be joining Cities Changing Diabetes

We are proud and happy to announce that Novo Nordisk Spain and the City of Madrid have agreed to make Madrid the next European partner city in the Cities Changing Diabetes programme. The announcement went out internally in Novo Nordisk this week and the external launch is scheduled for later this year. The main partner is ‘Madrid Salud’ – a public health institution within the municipality. To begin with the CCD partnership will focus on integrating and further developing the already well-established ALAS programme into Cities Changing Diabetes. The ALAS programme is a health intervention programme and about 150,000 people have participated in their community workshops promoting regular physical activity and a well-balanced diet. 

Facts about Madrid: Madrid is the capital of Spain and is a modern, dynamic and densely populated city posing challenges to healthy lifestyle opportunities. The inner-city population is approx. 3.2 million people; the metropolitan area population is around 7 million. The diabetes prevalence is 10,4% and obesity rate is 16,7%. I would like to congratulate Marta (MCXR), Israel (IPZ), Patricia (PCPR) and all the people in Madrid and welcome them into our group of cities who working to fight urban diabetes together.

Milan CCD endorsed by Lombardy Region

Friday last week Federico (FEDS) informed me that the President of the Health City Institute, Chair of the Italian CCD and President of the National Committee of the Biosafety, Biotechnology and Life Science of the Prime Minister’s Council  Prof. Andrea Lenzi and the President of Milan CCD executive committee Prof. Carruba, Director of the Obesity Centre of the Milan University,  received the official endorsement of Region Lombardy on Milan Cities Changing Diabetes.

The Minister of Welfare and Health of Region Lombardy Giulio Gallera confirmed by email that Region Lombardy should be part of the promoting committee of Milan CCD.

Situated in the North of Italy, in the heart of Europe, Lombardy represents a bridge to the Mediterranean. With an area of 24,000 square kilometres and almost 10 million inhabitants it can be compared to the size of a nation, and it is the 3rd most populated region in Europe after Île-de-France and Baden-Württemberg. It is going to be exciting to welcome Milan into the CCD group of cities later in 2018.

CCD Vancouver presented for Health xChange at FUSE International Conference

Last week, the team in Vancouver presented about Cities Changing Diabetes at an event called Health xChange, to kick off the Fuse International Conference on Knowledge Exchange in Public Health. Mario Miceli, a CCD patient partner, and Christine (CIAY) presented to a sold-out event, with 180 attendees representing 9 countries and 95 different organizations. Mario and Christine shared about the Vancouver team’s work so far, and advocated for the value of cross-sectoral public-private partnerships. This is a great way to share and inspire others so good work in Vancouver.

Copenhagen: GP clinic opens in vulnerable neighbourhood
Citizens in Tingbjerg, a vulnerable neighbourhood in Copenhagen, have for several years had to travel across town to see a doctor. That is changing now with two general practitioners opening shop in the local housing society’s hub. 

After long negotiations between the doctors union, the region and the city, a new approach to GP remuneration has been agreed to reflect the social profile of the local population. The GPs will spend more-than-usual time coordinating efforts with local social workers, a home nurse and the city’s Center for Diabetes.

The clinic has been a key Cities Changing Diabetes action since the CCD vulnerability study in 2015 pointed to this as a major need to reduce health inequality. The University of Copenhagen vulnerability researchers deserves a lot of credit for making this happen as well as health administration in Copenhagen. As part of CCD partnership they will follow the clinic closely to evaluate its progress. 

Interesting Urban Reads

This week I have picked a couple of interesting reads on urban health. The first one you might already have seen yourself, however I still think it is interesting. It is from the New York Times with the story about Trans Fats Should be Eliminated Worldwide by 2023, says WHO. We all know that to the bend the curve on diabetes rates of people with obesity should be lowered by 25% globally. If this happens it will definitely contribute to this ambition. Thanks Doug (DOO) for sharing.

The second story I want to share explains how CCD is working in Vancouver. I have attached an interesting example of how they’re sharing what the CCD Vancouver partnership is doing in the city. I hope this is inspirational for other cities as well.

That is it for this week. In Denmark we have a long weekend because of public holiday on Monday so I will now be off for my summerhouse. I hope you all have a great and relaxing weekend.

Best regards,


Fiona Bailey