U.S. Representatives Ed Whitfield (R-KY), Diana DeGette (D-CO), and Tom Reed (R-NY), leaders of the U.S. House of Representatives Congressional Diabetes Caucus, released the following statement recognizing November 1st as "Type 1 Diabetes Day" and kicking off November as "National Diabetes Awareness Month".
"Twenty-six million Americans have diabetes, a disease that takes a significant toll on the body and is the leading cause of kidney failure, nontraumatic lower-limb amputations, and new cases of blindness among adults in the United States. Diabetes cost the United States $245 billion in 2012, a 40 percent increase from $174 billion in 2007. These costs are expected to double by 2020. National Diabetes Awareness Month is an opportunity to reflect on these sobering statistics and renew our efforts to minimize the burden of diabetes through research and education."
Recently, the Congressional Diabetes Caucus submitted a bipartisan letter to Speaker Boehner and House Democratic Leader Pelosi, signed by a group of 335 Members of Congress, recognizing the importance of the Special Diabetes Program (SDP), which improves the lives of people with diabetes. The program yields a real return on the federal investment, delivering new insights and therapies to advance on progress already made to cure, treat, and prevent Type 1 diabetes."
Type 1 diabetes (T1D) rates rose 23 percent among people under the age of 20 between 2001-2009. At this rate, the number of people with T1D will double with each generation. Type 1 Diabetes Day recognizes the challenges of living with diabetes and draws focus to the need for research that will cure, treat, and prevent T1D.
"We are very pleased with the strong bipartisan support for the SDP and look forward to working with Congressional leadership to continue the SDP's critical work. The Congressional Diabetes Caucus will engage with our constituents and our colleagues on Capitol Hill on Type 1 Diabetes Day and throughout National Diabetes Awareness Month to offer further education and to discuss ways in which we can address this costly and devastating disease."