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Novo Nordisk Foundation Awards Dkk 795 Million to Strengthen Diabetes Initiatives in the North Denmark Region

Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark will be established at Aalborg University Hospital and is expected to improve the treatment of the 35,000 people with diabetes who live in the Region. The Center is expected to be operational in 2022.

On 7 December 2017, the Board of Directors of the Novo Nordisk Foundation approved a grant of DKK 795 million for the North Denmark Region to strengthen the diabetes initiatives in the Region. The initiatives include establishing Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark in Aalborg.

The Foundation awarded the grants based on detailed project plans for establishing and operating the Center approved by broad political majorities in the North Denmark Regional Council. The project plans were prepared in a process involving health professionals, hospitals, patients and other sectors in the Region.

Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark is expected to treat 5000–5500 people with diabetes annually, but the ambition is that the quality of the treatment of diabetes will noticeably improve for all 35,000 people with diabetes in the Region.

“The Novo Nordisk Foundation wishes to contribute to Denmark being able to offer the world’s best research-based treatment for diabetes. The ambition of the grant for establishing Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark is to improve treatment for everyone with diabetes living in the Region. The goals are that the people who have diabetes can live longer and improve their quality of life and that fewer Danes develop diabetes,” says Sten Scheibye, Chairman of the Board, Novo Nordisk Foundation.

Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark will be established in a new building constructed near the new Aalborg University Hospital. The Center will raise the quality of treatment for diabetes in collaboration with North Denmark Regional Hospital, general practitioners and the municipalities in the Region.

Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark will have five core activities:

  • patient-centred and evidence-based treatment and prevention of the complications of diabetes;
  • clinical research;
  • education and competence development within diabetes;
  • intersectoral collaboration on prevention, early detection and treatment of diabetes; and
  • developing, testing and disseminating digital health solutions in diabetes.

The Center’s special focus on digital health solutions in diabetes will enable Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark to become a leader in this field regionally, nationally and internationally. The Center will contribute to realizing the digital potential within diabetes to improve the quality and effectiveness of treatment and prevention and helping people with diabetes to be more self-reliant, thereby improving their quality of life.

Ulla Astman, Chair of the North Denmark Regional Council, says: “The Center will be a major advance for the 35,000 people with diabetes who live in the North Denmark Region. We expect that new knowledge and experience in improving diabetes initiatives can also be used to improve the care pathways for people with other chronic diseases. Focusing on digital health and diabetes, we can further extend our leading position, including through the large-scale TeleCare Nord telemedicine project, and can develop the Center into a powerhouse in this field. The Center’s focus on digital solutions underpins our ambition to improve and standardize the quality of treatment throughout the Region – reaching each individual resident.”

The grant to the North Denmark Region enters into effect on 1 January 2018 and will run until the end of 2027, with the possibility of extension thereafter. The Foundation will fund the operating costs of the supplementary treatment of patients, clinical research, intersectoral collaboration and competence development. In addition, the Foundation will also fund the construction and equipping of the new building.

From 2018 and until the new building is expected to be operational in 2022, Steno Diabetes Center North Denmark will operate from premises at Aalborg University Hospital.


The Foundation has previously awarded grants for establishing Steno Diabetes Centers in other administrative regions in Denmark. In 2016, the Foundation awarded a grant of DKK 2.945 billion for establishing Steno Diabetes Center Copenhagen in the Capital Region. In 2017, the Foundation awarded grants of DKK 1.4 billion to the Central Denmark Region and DKK 1.4 billion to the Region of Southern Denmark for establishing Steno Diabetes Centers in both Aarhus and Odense. In addition, the Board approved a vision statement in September 2017 for strengthening the initiatives related to diabetes in Region Zealand.

The vision behind establishing the Steno Diabetes Centers is to offer world-class research-based treatment to people with diabetes in Denmark. The Centers will integrate competencies within treatment, clinical research and education related to diabetes and will thereby be able to offer better and more integrated treatment to each person with diabetes.

Read more about the Steno Diabetes Centers at Danish)


North Denmark Region: Ulla Astman, Chair, North Denmark Regional Council, phone +45 3023 6454, [email protected]
Christian Mostrup Scheel, Senior Press Officer, Novo Nordisk Foundation, phone: +45 3067 4805, [email protected]