New Partnership Aims to Increase Research and Initiatives To Bring an End to Diabetes Stigma

The diaTribe Foundation and the Australian Centre for Behavioural Research in Diabetes (ACBRD) have joined hands to launch a new partnership that aims to strengthen the dStigmatize program, which focuses on increasing awareness, research, and innovation in the field of diabetes stigma. 

Diabetes stigma is a significant issue that affects roughly 4 in 5 adults with diabetes, which can impact their mental and physical health, their self-care and self-esteem, and their social and professional lives. 

Diabetes stigma refers to the shame, blame, rejection, exclusion or prejudice that people with diabetes unfairly experience as a result of their condition. Stigma can also be internalized – those feelings of self-blame and self-judgment that come from believing that the stereotypes and negative attitudes perpetuated in society are true.

Diabetes stigma is a global problem that often comes from misunderstandings, misconceptions, or ignorance about what diabetes is, how it is managed, and the complications that may be associated with it.

Stigma is an emerging field of research within the diabetes ecosystem. Our current knowledge of diabetes stigma is limited. Researchers are only just beginning to scratch the surface when it comes to understanding the prevalence and impacts of it and beginning to develop interventions to reduce it.

The partnership between diaTribe and the ACBRD will focus on a series of research projects and initiatives aimed at broadening our understanding of the stigma associated with diabetes, and working towards bringing an end to diabetes stigma. This means filling in the research gaps such as:

  • Characterizing what diabetes stigma looks like, and understanding more about its experience and prevalence in various countries.
  • Understanding how stigma affects those with gestational diabetes, or rarer types, such as MODY, and LADA.
  • Assessing the impact of stigma on health behaviors and outcomes.
  • Developing and testing interventions to support people experiencing internalized stigma, and to reduce stigmatizing attitudes and behaviors towards people with diabetes.
  • And much more!

The aim of the partnership is to collaborate, conduct, present and publish new research, develop resources with, and for, people with diabetes, healthcare professionals, and the broader community, and use these to strengthen global advocacy about diabetes stigma, and reframe what it means to live with this condition.

At a time when more and more people are being diagnosed with diabetes than ever before, it is vital that leaders in this field join together to improve our understanding of the psychosocial aspects of this condition. This exciting partnership will, hopefully, superpower the efforts of both diaTribe and the ACBRD – two organizations with proven and complementary track records of advocacy and research to support all people living with, or affected by, diabetes.

Addressing diabetes stigma is an essential missing element of effective diabetes care, but this partnership brings us one step closer to making a meaningful difference in the lives of people with diabetes by understanding, sharing and reducing the burden and impacts of diabetes stigma. To learn more, check out these resources:


Written by Matthew Garza – 5/31/23