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Senators Clinton, Collins and Representatives Engel, Fossella Introduce Diabetes Legislation

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Senators Clinton, Collins and Representatives Engel, Fossella Introduce Diabetes Legislation

Bill Increases Ability to Engage in Education and Diabetes Management

Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) and Susan Collins (R-ME) today joined with Representatives Eliot Engel (D-NY) and Vito Fossella (R-NY) to introduce the Diabetes Prevention and Treatment Control Act, which increases our nation's ability to address the growing epidemic of diabetes.

"With a payment system that rewards treatments for complications, but not the low-cost prevention initiatives that could stop such complications from occurring, our healthcare system is ill-equipped to handle the growing prevalence of diabetes," said Senator Clinton. "This legislation is the first step in establishing the important diabetes prevention and disease management initiatives necessary to meet the needs of the more than 60 million people living with diabetes or who are at risk for developing diabetes."

"Diabetes funding at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has not been increased in the past four years, while, over the same time period, the prevalence of diabetes has increased by nearly 30 percent," said Senator Collins. "The legislation that we are introducing today provides increased support for the CDC so that it can translate medical research into programs and practices that can be used in local communities to help people suffering from diabetes to manage their disease and to help those at risk for diabetes to prevent or delay the onset of the disease."

"This bill will attack our mounting diabetes epidemic on two fronts; it will promote research at the Centers for Disease Control so that we may better understand this disease while also funding innovative treatment and education efforts at the state and local level," said Congressman Engel.

"We know that diabetes can either be prevented or effectively managed through proper diet and exercise in many cases. The goal is to expand federal research to develop a cure for diabetes while also empowering the American people with information so they can remain healthy. This legislation represents a comprehensive strategy to address diabetes prevention and management in the United States," Congressman Fossella said.

"Diabetes and obesity prevalence are increasing at alarming rates. It is essential that the federal government begin to give a higher priority to prevention and lifestyle modification programs. I commend Senator Clinton, Congressman Fossella, and Congressman Engel for introducing this legislation which begins to recognize the urgent need to develop community-based programs that can demonstrate effective interventions to halt the twin epidemics of diabetes and obesity," said Dr. Thomas Frieden, Commissioner of New York City's Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

The bill introduced today would codify the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Division of Diabetes Translation and set up demonstration grants to allow for further research on how to translate effective diet and exercise interventions into effective clinical practice. It would also increase the ability of state and local health departments to engage in surveillance and education activities, and set up demonstration projects to examine the best ways to treat diabetes when it occurs in conjunction with other chronic health conditions.

Earlier this year, Senators Clinton and Collins also introduced the Gestational Diabetes (GEDI) Act to combat growing rates of diabetes striking pregnant women across the nation. The GEDI Act companion bill in the House of Representatives was also introduced by Representatives Engel and Fossella. The legislation introduced today is supported by the American Diabetes Association.

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