SOURCE: American Diabetes Association

July 09, 2008 17:54 ET

American Diabetes Association Applauds U.S. Congress for Extending Special Diabetes Programs

ALEXANDRIA, VA--(Marketwire - July 9, 2008) - The American Diabetes Association (ADA) applauds the U.S. Congress for voting in favor of extending the Special Diabetes Programs (SDP) for two more years. Today, the U.S. Senate voted in support of a Medicare package that included a two-year extension of the Special Diabetes Programs. The measure recently passed in the U.S. House of Representatives as well. These programs consist of the Special Diabetes Program for Indians (SDPI) and the Special Statutory Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research (SDP-type1) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Both require periodic joint Congressional re-authorization and will now continue through September 2011.

"We applaud Congress for their vote to extend the Special Diabetes Programs," said R. Stewart Perry, Chair of the Board of the American Diabetes Association. "We know the value of these programs and the real difference they make in the quality of life for millions of people with diabetes and, in changing the future for all people with diabetes."

23.6 million Americans -- or 7.8 percent of the population -- have diabetes. Diabetes is among the leading causes of death by disease in the United States. SDPI helps to implement prevention, education and treatment programs in Native American communities. At 17 percent, American Indians and Alaska Natives have the highest age-adjusted prevalence of diabetes among all U.S. racial and ethnic groups. Recent government studies have demonstrated that the program's prevention and treatment efforts have contributed to significant reductions in diabetes complications in these targeted populations.

Previous funding for the Special Funding Program for Type 1 Diabetes Research has led to the establishment of large scale, collaborative research programs that could not otherwise have been undertaken. This has resulted in the advancement of research that accelerates the improvements towards prevention, treatment and finding a cure.

The ADA is the nation's leading voluntary health organization supporting diabetes research, information and advocacy. The Association's advocacy efforts include helping to combat discrimination against people with diabetes; advocating for the increase of federal diabetes research and programs; and improved access to, and quality of, healthcare for people with diabetes. The ADA's mission is to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. Founded in 1940, the Association provides service to hundreds of communities across the country. For more information please call the American Diabetes Association at 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383) or visit Information from both these sources is available in English and Spanish.

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