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World IBD Day – 19 May 2020

Recognizing the workplace impact of Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

Picture the scene – you’re mid-presentation, and you need to run to the bathroom. No time for explanation, the urgency is immediate. On other days, abdominal cramps and diarrhea have made you miss meetings, your deadlines are slipping, colleagues are showing frustration, yet it’s far from intentional.

This is the reality that many of the 10 million people living with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) worldwide face.1 Particularly affecting those of working age, IBD can make a person´s professional life particularly challenging and may impact their career path.2 Many people with IBD want to and can successfully work, and employment can have a positive influence on overall wellbeing.2 Yet a survey conducted by the European Federation of Crohn’s and Colitis Associations (EFCCA) in partnership with the European Crohn's and Colitis Organization (ECCO) across 25 countries showed that a shocking 44% of people with IBD claim they have lost or quit their job because of their condition.3 That is why this year’s World IBD Day organized by EFCCA is dedicated to ‘Make IBD work’, helping to drive awareness and consideration of IBD in the workplace.2

Uniting Takeda workplaces on World IBD Day

At Takeda, we are determined to enhance understanding and empathy around IBD. For colleagues who have had their lives or families affected, we know all too well the broad impact of IBD.

“Growth and development, social bonds, school, and work performance can all be affected along with physical, emotional and mental health,”3,4 said Jeff Bornstein, Deputy Head of Clinical Sciences, Takeda Gastroenterology. “When my sister was diagnosed in the 1980s, bowel disease wasn’t something to be discussed outside of the house. We’ve come a long way, and now, in addition to new treatments, we have removed stigma and created a much more supportive environment for patients and their families.”

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On 19 May, Takeda colleagues unite across the globe to drive recognition of World IBD Day and the impact of IBD on the workplace.

‘Walking the talk’

Beyond just celebrating the awareness day itself, we want our colleagues to truly understand what patients go through, and take pride in the work that we’re doing.


Our In Their Shoes Program, which reveals the reality of IBD, will have been undertaken by over 1,700 people from 30 countries by the end of May, helping to increase understanding, empathy, and support. It is just one way that Takeda ensures that patients are kept at the center of everything we do.


  1. EFCCA. About EFCCA. www.efcca.org. Last accessed: April 2020.
  2. EFCCA. World IBD Day 2020. www.efcca.org/en/projects/world-ibd-day-2020. Last accessed: April 2020.
  3. Burisch J, Jess T, Martinato M. et al. The burden of inflammatory bowel disease in Europe. J Crohns Colitis. 2013;7:322–337.
  4. Becker HM, Grigat D, Barkema HB. Living with inflammatory bowel disease: A Crohn’s and Colitis Canada survey. Can J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2015;29:77–84.