Congressional Relief Package Extends Special Diabetes Program and Provides Additional Support for T1D Community

Funding for community health centers and extended prescription drug refills among the benefits for people with type 1 diabetes

NEW YORK, March 30, 2020 – In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact around the world, JDRF, the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research, is working to ensure the 1.6 million Americans living with T1D stay informed and healthy during this challenging time. These efforts include continued advocacy to address the near- and long-term needs of the T1D community.

“The safety and well-being of the T1D community is our top priority during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Aaron J. Kowalski, Ph.D., JDRF President and CEO. “In addition to providing information and resources to help people with T1D stay healthy, JDRF has been fighting for the needs of our community on Capitol Hill. Thanks to our congressional champions, the congressional relief package signed by the President includes continued funding for the Special Diabetes Program, which is a critical vehicle for T1D research. As we move forward together, this funding will bring us one step closer to creating a world without T1D.”

JDRF and its countless volunteers have long advocated for the renewal of the Special Diabetes Program (SDP) and the need to make insulin more accessible and affordable. The congressional relief package that President Trump signed includes more than $75 million in funding for the SDP, extending it until November 30, 2020. The SDP is improving lives and advancing research to treat, prevent, and ultimately find cures for T1D through the National Institutes of Health, the nation’s premier medical research agency. This work complements JDRF-funded research.

The congressional relief package also includes provisions that have near-term impact for people with T1D as they navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. It includes renewed funding for community health centers, where people can access affordable insulin and other prescriptions. And it requires that Medicare Part D plans provide up to a 90-day supply of prescription medications, including insulin, if requested by a beneficiary during the COVID-19 emergency period.

“We look forward to continuing to work with Congress and the Administration to further support the T1D community, including ensuring everyone can access affordable insulin, an especially urgent concern in this economic climate,” Kowalski added.

In addition to securing support for people with T1D in the relief package, JDRF has kept the community informed with specific resources about COVID-19, including how to stay healthy and be prepared with extra medications and supplies, at JDRF also provides information and resources at to help people access and pay for insulin and other prescriptions.

About JDRF
JDRF is the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Our mission is to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications. To accomplish this, JDRF has invested more than $2.2 billion in research funding since our inception. We are an organization built on a grassroots model of people connecting in their local communities, collaborating regionally for efficiency and broader fundraising impact and uniting on a national stage to pool resources, passion and energy. We collaborate with academic institutions, policymakers and corporate and industry partners to develop and deliver a pipeline of innovative therapies to people living with T1D. Our staff and volunteers throughout the United States and our five international affiliates are dedicated to advocacy, community engagement and our vision of a world without T1D. For more information, please visit or follow us on Twitter: @JDRF.