JDRF Illinois celebrates recent COVID-19 vaccine expansion to include people living with type 1 diabetes (T1D)

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Starting February 25th, those living with type 1 diabetes (T1D) ages 16 and older in Illinois will be included in the group of people with underlying conditions eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccines.

As news spreads today about Governor Pritzker’s expansion of the COVID-19 vaccine to include people with underlying conditions, the JDRF Illinois Chapter is excited for the community of people managing type 1 diabetes (T1D) to further protect themselves during the pandemic.

Recent research shows that adults who get COVID-19 and have diabetes, whether type 1 or type 2 diabetes, have three to four times higher risk of severe illness and hospitalization. Based on this evidence, JDRF has called upon healthcare decision makers to make people with T1D or T2D, as well as their caregivers, a high priority for receiving COVID-19 vaccines. The announcement from the Illinois Governor today is very good news for those managing the daily stresses of managing T1D as well as their families.

“We are so thankful for the many people who spoke up in Illinois and asked the Governor and the state to consider the needs and concerns of those with pre-existing conditions. These are our most vulnerable populations,” said Mimi K. Crabtree, Executive Director of JDRF Illinois. “Plus, with the alarming rise of type 1 diabetes in the Hispanic and Black communities it adds an additional concern.”

More than 85% of people living with T1D are adults. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that is not preventable. It has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle, can occur at any age and requires insulin dependence for the rest of an individual’s life and currently has no cure. Thanks to the advancements in the treatments of this disease, primarily funded by JDRF, people managing diabetes are living longer and healthier lives.

“We are so excited for today’s announcement that will take the worry and burden off those with T1D in Illinois,” Crabtree said. Learn more about type 1 diabetes and the COVID-19 vaccine with JDRF’s toolkit here: http://jdrf.org/covidvaccinetoolkit and follow along on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.