In 1920, Dr. Frederick Banting was working as a doctor in London, Ont., when he first thought of taking insulin from a pancreas to treat diabetes. After experimenting for a few months with the help of his assistant, Charles Best and biochemist James Collip and support from Professor John J.R. Macleod of the University of Toronto, they were able to create pure insulin that could be used on humans. The first successful test on a human patient with diabetes happened on January 23, 1922—it was a life-changing discovery.
In the late 1940s, Charles Best formed the Diabetic Association of Ontario to help advocate for and serve the needs of the growing numbers of Canadians with diabetes. After this, other provinces and territories formed their own diabetic associations. In 1953, they decided to amalgamate and become the Canadian Diabetes Association, which provided advocacy, education, research funding, and programs and services for those living with the disease.
On February 13, 2017, The Canadian Diabetes Association changed its name to Diabetes Canada. This name change represents their renewed commitment to changing the conversation around diabetes, making the invisible disease more visible, and raising awareness about the diabetes epidemic. Diabetes Canada is committed to partnering with Canadians to End Diabetes through resources for health-care professionals on best practices to care for people with diabetes; advocate to governments, schools, and workplaces; and fund world-leading Canadian research to improve treatments and find a cure.
With a vision of a world free of the effects of diabetes, Diabetes Canada’s mission is to lead the fight against diabetes by preventing the onset and consequences of diabetes, helping those affected by diabetes to live healthy lives, and working to find a cure.
For more information on Diabetes Canada, please visit www.diabetes.ca.