One of JDRF’s top legislative priorities has been achieved with the enactment of a three-year renewal of the Special Diabetes Program (SDP). The program, now funded until September 30, 2023 at $150 million per year, will enable researchers to build upon the momentum in type 1 diabetes (T1D) to date and explore new opportunities that have been waiting for funding. Throughout the course of 2020, the SDP received intermittent funding while Congress worked on a longer-term renewal of the program. This is a huge win for, and one that we share with, the entire T1D community and their loved ones and is the longest renewal of funding since 2004.
This wonderful news became a reality due to the tireless commitment of our JDRF volunteers and advocates through JDRF’s mobilizations and campaigns, most recently 452 ‘Promise to Remember Me’ virtual meetings between Members of Congress and advocates of all ages and experiences. Our champions in Congress include Senators Susan Collins (R-ME) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Representatives Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Tom Reed (R-NY) who we’d like to thank for their tremendous leadership and work to secure this and many other renewals.
Enacted in 1997, the SDP helps improve lives by advancing research to treat, prevent and ultimately find cures for T1D through the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The program has helped scientists make significant advances – including artificial pancreas technology, beta cell replacement techniques, improvements to continuous glucose monitors and treatments for complications of T1D like diabetic retinopathy.
Research was the key to the discovery of insulin 100 years ago – prior to this breakthrough, people typically survived two years or less with T1D. Research is also the key to tomorrow’s prevention and cures, and to improving lives now and in the future. The SDP complements many of JDRF’s research priorities but also helps the T1D community as it supports research in cures as well as improving lives.
Join us in saying ‘Thank You’ to Congress today and if you’re interested in becoming a JDRF advocate, sign up here!