In progress City project

Mississauga Diabetes Strategy

Diabetes is affecting a rapidly growing number of Mississauga residents. The City is working with partners, experts and the community to develop a strategy to prevent cases from rising.

Background

Based on projections from 2015 to 2016, Peel Region is expected to have almost 100,000 new cases of diabetes over the following 10 years, putting a significant strain on the Region’s healthcare system including an estimated cost of $643 million.1

To help prevent diabetes, the City of Mississauga joined the Cities Changing Diabetes (CCD) program in 2021 to connect to an international network of municipalities building and sharing strategies to prevent and manage diabetes. CCD was launched in 2014 by the Steno Diabetes Centre Copenhagen, University College London and Novo Nordisk. Today, the program has established local partnerships in approximately 40 cities around the world with the City of Mississauga serving as the only active Canadian municipality. Through this membership, the City will access CCD resources, such as case studies from other cities, to inform our work.

The City will also work with the Region of Peel, University of Toronto Mississauga, Trillium Health Partners and other stakeholders and the community to build a diabetes strategy made for and in Mississauga.

Project overview

Using a comprehensive approach, the Mississauga Diabetes Strategy aims to reduce the risk factors and improve the protective factors associated with the development, and/or the progression, of type 2 diabetes, ultimately to decrease the prevalence of diabetes in Mississauga.

The strategy will aim to lower the number of diabetes cases in the City through a focus on building healthy complete communities that are compact, pedestrian-friendly and transit-supportive, and contains a mix of uses that support daily living and enable physical activity through active transportation. The strategy will also inform community services and programming to continue to support active living and education for diabetes prevention

The City will work with the community, stakeholders, industry, agency and government partners to better understand Mississauga’s unique diabetes challenges, identify community needs and priorities, build the strategy and determine the action plan.

Milestones
  1. 1
    2021

    Launch project including the Mayor’s community roundtables (September to December) as well as the signing of the Urban Diabetes Declaration by the Mayor and City Council (November).

  2. 2
    2022

    Initiate research to identify and understand Mississauga’s unique diabetes challenge and connect with stakeholders.

  3. 3
    Winter to Spring 2023

    Through public engagement, establish directions and the design of strategy.

  4. 4
    Summer to Fall 2023

    Through public engagement, develop, test and refine the strategy and action plan.

Public engagement

In 2021, the Mayor hosted three community roundtables to start the conversation about diabetes and discuss ideas to educate and work towards prevention strategies.

We know that over 50 per cent of Peel residents identify as Asian, Arab, Black, Hispanic or Indigenous peoples, and these groups are at an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.2,3 In the fall of 2021, the City of Mississauga held three sessions to discuss its diabetes challenge. These sessions were with the South Asian community, the Black community, as well as the business and not-for-profit communities.

The City will begin conducting another series of community engagement sessions to identify areas of change and generate insights to build the Mississauga Diabetes Strategy.

Frequently asked questions

Learn more about diabetes and the growing need for a strategy. Download the City of Mississauga fact sheet for additional information.

Type 2 diabetes is a serious medical condition that affects the way the body regulates and uses sugar as a fuel. This long-term (chronic) condition results in too much sugar circulating in the bloodstream.

However, the development of type 2 diabetes and its side effects, including severe complications, can be prevented if detected and effectively managed at an early stage. When left untreated, it can lead to serious complications, including heart disease, kidney and nerve damage, and stroke.

Cases of type 2 diabetes in Peel Region have increased by 182 per cent between 1996 and 2015.

One in six adults living in Peel Region, ages of 45 and 64, has this preventable disease – one in three after age 65.

Type 2 diabetes is putting an added strain on our public health agencies and healthcare systems. The projected healthcare cost of diabetes in Peel Region is estimated to be $689 million in 2024.

Approximately, 53.6 per cent of Peel Region residents are overweight or obese, which is the single, biggest risk factor for developing type 2 diabetes.

Additionally, 51.3 per cent of adults in Peel Region identify as as Asian, South Asian, Arab, Black, Hispanic or Indigenous peoples, and these groups are at an increased risk of getting type 2 diabetes.

In addition to the development of a diabetes strategy, the City is working to address type 2 diabetes and promote healthy living through a wide range of measures, including:

  • Introducing a Healthy Food and Beverage Policy for Recreation Facilities to promote healthier eating by increasing the range of healthier food and beverage choices available through Concession Services and vending machines
  • Implementing the Cycling Master Plan, planning and programming improvements to the City’s cycling and pedestrian infrastructure, developing and implementing education and awareness programs and events related to active transportation and building new multi-use trails and protected cycling infrastructure to encourage a more active lifestyle
  • Offering and promoting healthy living activities such as fitness and wellness programs and the management and operation of more than 500 parks and supporting trail networks
  • Implementing the Economic Development Strategy that promotes a more human centred approach to development, decreasing residents’ reliance on cars and creating an environment that is more welcoming for walking to boost activity levels
  • Initiating a 2-year pilot program, Healthy by Design Questionnaire, that evaluates development applications from a health perspective
  • Adopting Resolution 0207-2020 to address systemic discrimination and inequities within Mississauga, including accessibility to resources, services and supports for Black and Indigenous residents
  • Managing a community gardens program which provides residents access to shared spaces to grow food and encourage active and healthy living
  • Developing an Urban Agriculture Strategy to identify the City’s role in supporting corporate and community efforts to increase urban-scale food production across Mississauga
  • Hosting webinars with community partners and stakeholders to raise awareness about diabetes prevention

In February 2021, the City welcomed a new research hub in Mississauga, funded by Novo Nordisk, a global healthcare company and University of Toronto.

Located at the University of Toronto Mississauga (UTM) campus, it brings leading public health experts together to help reduce global diseases and illness like diabetes.

Novo Nordisk and UTM have invested $40 million to establish the Novo Nordisk Network for Healthy Populations to address the rise in chronic diseases and diabetes.

The experts

Developing a diabetes strategy requires an evidence-informed approach, and we need experts and data to understand diabetes in Mississauga. This important work is reliant on our policy, data and research experts.

Together the City, partners, experts and community will build the Mississauga Diabetes Strategy.

Peel Public Health (PPH) is made up of health experts, practitioners, researchers and changemakers, with a goal to prevent people from getting sick in the first place. More information on PPH’s role in chronic disease prevention can be found here: Healthy Complete Communities, School Healthy Pledge Program, Workplace Health, Health Status Reports  the Diabetes Atlas, The Healthy Development Monitoring Map, and literature reviews.

Region of Peel logo

University of Toronto Mississauga Novo Nordisk Network for Healthy Populations is leading research to identify and implement strategies to reduce the inequities in risk and burden of diabetes and other chronic diseases through better care, lower risk factors and healthier environments.

University of Toronto logo.

Institute for Better Health – Trillium Health Partners – The Family and Child Health Initiative is leading research with the Black and South Asian communities to understand those with lived experience of diabetes and those that are caregivers.

Institute for Better Health at Trillium Health Partners logo

Cities Changing Diabetes Programme is an international network of municipalities building and sharing strategies to prevent and manage diabetes.

Contact

For more information about the development of this strategy, please contact:

Ruth Marland, MCIP, RPP
Strategic Leader
Strategic Initiatives, City Manager’s Office
905-615-3200 ext. 5827
ruth.marland@mississauga.ca

Sources:

  1. Public Health. Diabetes in Peel: Looking forward. Using the diabetes population risk tool (DPoRT) 2.0 to predict diabetes in the Region of Peel using 2015/2016 Canadian Community Health Survey Data. Mississauga, ON: Region of Peel – Public Health; April 2019.
  2. Statistics Canada, Census 2016.
  3. Region of Peel – Public Health. The Changing Landscape of Health in Peel. A Comprehensive Health Status Report. 2019.
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