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Sir Michael Hirst, International Diabetes Federation President will describe the global pandemic of diabetes with particular focus on the enormous health and economic burden this present for poor and developing nations where 4 out of every 5 cases of diabetes present. He will also focus on the Western Pacific region – China, Indonesia and the pacific island nations and close neighbours of Australia and our role in reducing the impact in the region.
Professor Greg Johnson, CEO of Diabetes Australia, will then outline a new National Diabetes Strategy for Australia and Sir Michael Hirst will formally launch the new strategy. Sir Michael Hirst from the United Kingdom is the President of the International Diabetes Federation.
Sir Michael Hirst from the United Kingdom is the President of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) 2013-2015.
He became interested in diabetes over twenty years ago when his youngest child was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at a very young age. Then a Member of the British Parliament, Sir Michael championed the cause of diabetes in Parliament, as a result of which he was co-opted to the Board of Trustees of the British Diabetic Association, now Diabetes UK. There he served as a trustee in a variety of capacities for 17 years, most recently as the first non-medical Chairman of the Board of Trustees from 2001-2006. As Chairman, he oversaw major changes in the operations and governance of Diabetes UK, Europe’s largest organisation for people with diabetes.
Sir Michael Hirst is a graduate in law of the University of Glasgow, and was an exchange student at the University of Iceland. He later qualified as a chartered accountant and became a partner in KPMG, the international accounting firm, until he entered the British Parliament. Sir Michael held a number of senior positions in frontline politics until 1997 and was knighted for political and public service in 1992. He has also served on the board of a number of leading charities and public bodies, and is currently Chairman of two companies in the UK.
Greg Johnson joined Diabetes Australia – Vic as Chief Executive in January 2003 and was appointed Diabetes Australia Chief Executive in November 2012 following an acting role from 2009–2011. He has over 25 years’ experience in healthcare including 15 years’ experience in chief executive roles in hospitals and health services in Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.
Greg is chair of the Australian Chronic Disease Prevention Alliance and he is Chief Executive for the National Diabetes Services Scheme.
Greg is an adjunct professor with Deakin University and holds a degree in pharmacy, post-graduate qualifications in hospital pharmacy and health service management, and a master’s degree in business administration. He has participated in a range of industry and government advisory committees and is a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Greg has a particular interest in the management, awareness and prevention of diabetes. He is also passionate about advocating for people with diabetes and raising awareness of the issues associated with research to improve people’s lives.