Renewal of the Special Diabetes Program: Your help is needed!


Our JDRF Advocacy leaders have returned from Washington DC! Help keep their efforts going & contact your Members of Congress to let them know how important a multi-year renewal of the Special Diabetes Program is to you! Message them now at!

Special Diabetes Program Advocacy Action

What is the Special Diabetes Program (SDP)?

In recognition of an alarming trend, Congress formed the Diabetes Research Working Group in 1997, which reported serious limitations in diabetes research – for type 1 diabetes (T1D) in particular – largely due to inadequate funding. In light of the working group’s report, Congress created the SDP, a program made up of two parts: one to advance T1D research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and the other to fund treatment, education, and prevention programs for American Indian and Alaska Native populations, who are disproportionately affected by type 2 diabetes.

Real Progress, Real Results: Since its inception, the SDP has demonstrated tangible results. The program has enabled scientists to make significant advances in cure therapies, prevention studies and treatment improvements (including the Artificial Pancreas Project and groundbreaking advances in vision improvement among people with diabetic eye disease), and is an essential component of federal investment in diabetes research. The SDP is funded at $150 million per year, and is currently operational until September 2014, with the one-year renewal put in place at the end of 2012. However, multiple-year funding must be established in the future to continue large-scale trials, proactively plan next steps to maximize research opportunities, and to most effectively allocate research dollars without interruption.

Renew the SDP

Renewal of the SDP remains JDRF’s top federal legislative priority for this year. This program has enjoyed strong bipartisan support from Congress since its inception, it has proven itself to be worthy of federal investment as it is improving the lives of those who have diabetes, and it will help reduce healthcare costs for our country in the long-term. This critical program provides nearly 35% of the publicly-funded type 1 diabetes research at NIH. Without a timely multi-year fully-funded renewal of the program, clinical trials will slow down or halt altogether, and JDRF will not be able to fill the gap.

To learn more about the importance of renewing the SDP, please read our SDP brochure and our individual fact sheets below:

What Can I Do as an Advocate?

Sign-up to be an advocate if you aren’t already, and take action when you see our alerts. Your voice will help make a difference. If you would like others to learn more about the SDP, please share this page with your friends, family, neighbors and coworkers, and link to our pages on social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube. For further updates, please check back with us often at this advocacy page. Thank you for all that you do.