dStigmatize Language Guide

People with diabetes, their families, and people at risk of diabetes, deserve communications that are clear and accurate, respectful, inclusive, and free from judgment and bias. What are simple principles for appropriate and effective communication? The words we use to talk about diabetes often reflect a lack of awareness or consideration, or may express conscious […]

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A Guide to the Portrayal of Diabetes in Film and Television

Graphic of a woman with an insulin pump and the title A guide to the portrayal of diabetes in film and television

This guide was created as a collaboration between the diaTribe Foundation and Beyond Type 1. Thank you for sharing the realities of living with diabetes with your audience. Your work will help educate, raise awareness, clear up misconceptions, increase safety, and reduce stigma. Approximately 1.6 million Americans currently have type 1 diabetes ( which includes […]

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diaTribe Writing Guidelines: Stigma

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In all cases, aim to use language that is neutral, nonjudgmental, and based on facts, actions, or physiology/biology. In addition, use language that is person-centered and encourages collaboration between people with diabetes and their entire care team. And finally, be intentional about avoiding words or phrases that indicate a value judgment or blame (such as […]

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dStigmatize Communications Checklist

Open notebook with pen

Do you have an editorial policy or style guidelines that include recommendations for language related to diabetes? If so: If not: What processes do you use to ensure that internal and external communications teams avoid stigmatizing language when talking about diabetes, and people with diabetes and prediabetes? Click here to download a PDF version of […]

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What is Diabetes Stigma?

Diabetes Stigma: Graphic of a doctor's hand unraveling a string around a heart. Diabetes technology and medications. A Resource for Healthcare Heroes.

Diabetes stigma refers to negative social judgments, stereotypes, and prejudices about diabetes, or about a person due to their diabetes.1 Diabetes stigma becomes discrimination when it is used in unfair or prejudicial treatment towards a person with diabetes.1 Why does diabetes stigma exist? Most health-related stigma, including diabetes stigma, is caused by shame, blame, fear, […]

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Diabetes Stigma in Healthcare

Many health professionals are incredibly supportive of people with diabetes and skilled at delivering compassionate, person-centered care and treatment. However, studies show that people with diabetes experience implicit and explicit stigma from health professionals.1-3 What do we know? Unfortunately, implicit and explicit bias against people with diabetes is common among health professionals. In a study […]

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How to Talk About Diabetes-Related Technology

There have been many innovations in the technology that people with diabetes use to monitor their glucose levels and deliver insulin in recent years. Continuous glucose monitors (CGM), insulin pumps, and automated insulin delivery (AID) systems have all contributed to helping people better manage their diabetes. However, conversations around diabetes-related technology and devices can sometimes […]

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How to Talk About Diabetes-Related Medications

Whether it’s metformin, insulin, or newer medications like SGLT-2 inhibitors, GLP-1 receptor agonists, or dual agonists, there are dozens of helpful medications designed to help people with diabetes manage their glucose levels and reduce their risk for diabetes-related complications. However, conversations around diabetes medications, especially insulin, can be difficult and fraught with stigmatizing and judgmental […]

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Checking Our Bias: Removing Stigma in the Clinical Setting

Shot of a doctor examining a patient with a stethoscope during a consultation in a hospital

Definitions & Background Diabetes stigma includes the negative stereotypes, blame, judgment, and prejudice that people with diabetes (PWD) experience.1 This type of stigma can lead to discrimination; the unfair or prejudicial treatment of PWD.1  Research suggests as much as 80% of adults with diabetes report experiencing diabetes stigma2 coming from numerous sources: Healthcare professionals (HCPs), […]

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The information published on this website is not a substitute for medical advice and should not be used to make decisions that change treatment. We urge readers to consult with healthcare professionals for questions regarding their treatment and in all matters related to their health.