Statement Regarding the House FY 2013 Labor, Health and Human Services Subcommittee Appropriations Bill

Alexandria, VA,
July 19, 2012

The American Diabetes Association (Association) strongly opposes the FY 2013 House Labor, Health and Human Services (LHHS) Appropriations bill as passed by the House LHHS Appropriations Subcommittee and urges changes by the full Appropriations Committee. If passed, the Subcommittee bill is a step backwards in ongoing efforts to Stop Diabetes® and does not provide adequate funding for vital diabetes research and prevention programs.

Nearly 26 million Americans are living with diabetes and another 79 million have prediabetes, placing them at increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes. The total annual cost of diabetes and its complications, including undiagnosed diabetes, prediabetes and gestational diabetes was an estimated $218 billion in 2007, and will continue to grow unless our country takes action. The FY 2013 House LHHS Appropriations bill places the health of these 105 million Americans, and the fiscal stability of our nation, at risk.

The House LHHS Appropriations Subcommittee has called for an 11 percent reduction in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) overall budget. The Association believes these cuts will hamper the ability of CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation (DDT) to build upon its innovative diabetes translational research and prevention programs. Additionally, the bill endangers vital programming for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), including the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) by maintaining static budget levels, making it difficult for NIDDK to move forward on promising diabetes research opportunities. Decreased and stagnant funding will deter the development and implementation of proven prevention programs at the CDC and DDT, and decrease NIH and NIDDK’s ability to conduct cutting-edge research needed to better manage and ultimately cure diabetes.

Additionally, the Association opposes the provision of the FY 2013 House LHHS Appropriations bill that eliminates all funding for the Prevention and Public Health Fund established by the Affordable Care Act. Rescinding this funding ends an essential commitment to improving our nation’s health, harming such critical efforts as the expansion of the National Diabetes Prevention Program, an evidence-based lifestyle change program at the CDC for preventing type 2 diabetes.

“The American Diabetes Association urges Members of the House Appropriations Committee to increase, not decrease, federal funding for diabetes research and prevention programs that are vital to addressing the devastating toll diabetes takes on our country,” said L. Hunter Limbaugh, Chair of the Board, American Diabetes Association. “If current trends continue, by 2050 we will live in a nation where as many as one in three American adults will have diabetes. Our country cannot afford to take a step backwards in the face of this epidemic.”

The American Diabetes Association is leading the fight to Stop Diabetes and its deadly consequences and fighting for those affected by diabetes. The Association funds research to prevent, cure and manage diabetes; delivers services to hundreds of communities; provides objective and credible information; and gives voice to those denied their rights because of diabetes. Founded in 1940, our mission is to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes.

For more information please call the American Diabetes Association at 1-800-DIABETES (800-342-2383) or visit www.diabetes.org. Information from both these sources is available in English and Spanish.