About Diabetes Action Canada


Diabetes Action Canada is a pan-Canadian research organization that was launched in 2016.  Funded jointly by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research’s (CIHR)  Strategic Patient-Oriented Research (SPOR) program, non-profit organizations (e.g. Diabetes Canada, JDRF), and private sponsors. Our Network consists of a diverse team of patient partners, researchers, diabetes specialists, primary care practitioners, nurses, pharmacists, data specialists, and health policy experts committed to improving the lives of persons living with diabetes. We focus on bringing patients, their caregivers and researchers together to identify the health concerns of those living with diabetes and to co-create research projects that address these concerns. We partner and collaborate with university research teams across Canada, non-profit organizations, and provincial governments to plan, execute and evaluate these research projects so we can improve patient outcomes and experiences.


  • A diabetes diagnosis occurs every 3 minutes in Canada
  • Over 3 Million Canadians have diabetes and millions more are at risk of developing diabetes
  • Up to half of Canadian Indigenous Adolescents have multiple risk factors for type-2 diabetes
  • Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in working-age Canadians
  • Diabetes and its complications cost the health care system $27 billion in 2018


Diabetes Action Canada is addressing key areas of concerns articulated by our Patient Partners.  Through both goal-directed and enabling research programs we:

  1. Engage persons living with diabetes to integrate the patient perspective into every step of the research process including developing research questions, defining research objectives, collecting data and evaluating results
  2. Revolutionize how we use health data to better understand those living with diabetes and enable self-management through the National Diabetes Repository
  3. Prevent blindness through a comprehensive teleophthalmology retinal screening program and artificial intelligence technology for diagnostics
  4. Prevent lower limb amputations through a chiropody-led community-based intervention to treat and prevent diabetic foot ulcers
  5. Prevent diabetes and its complications among Indigenous youth through the Indigenous Youth Mentorship Program (IYMP) - a multi-generational mentoring and resilience-focused empowerment program
  6. Promote independence and improved quality of life for older adults with diabetes and multiple chronic conditions
  7. Connect persons living with type-1 diabetes (T1D) with clinical research opportunities through an opt-in T1D Registry
  8. Build capacity for patient-oriented research by training and supporting the next generation of researchers to learn from the patient experience
  9. Integrate Sex and Gender to understand how men and women differ in their health experiences, access to healthcare and responses to therapies
  10. Translate knowledge from research outcomes to healthcare policy and practice
  11. Evaluate the impact of our research Network as a measure of meaningful contribution to improving the experience of those living with diabetes



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