Diabetes Related Events and Developments In 2016
Scanning the American Diabetes Association’s 2016 press releases reveals how much diabetes news can slip by us unnoticed. It also creates an appreciation for the advocacy and resources offered on our behalf.
Here is a smattering of what occurred during the past 12 months to help us prevent, treat, and manage types 1 and 2 diabetes:
January. A Type 2 Diabetes Prevention campaign using humorous public service announcements was launched. It encourages people to take a brief online test that indicates a person’s risk for prediabetes (link below).
February. To ensure no one needing life-saving medication goes without, the ADA gave support to “promising avenues for change,” such as making all off-patent diabetes medications (including insulin) part of the lowest cost-sharing formulary tiers.
March. It was announced that the National Diabetes Prevention Program (link below) would be eligible for Medicare coverage, a move the ADA had been advocating for. “[The] announcement is a powerful endorsement of the value of preventive health care for people who are at risk of developing type 2 diabetes,” said Kevin L. Hagan, the ADA’s CEO.
April. More than 100 diabetes advocates and professional football players went to the nation’s capitol for the ADA’s Capitol Hill Advocacy Day. The athletes announced a diabetes awareness program called Team Tackle, and the ADA presented a Stop Diabetes petition urging increased funding for research and resources.
May. The ADA supported the FDA’s changes to the Nutrition Facts label on our foods. The addition of a line disclosing a product’s added sugars, and the rule that typical portion sizes must be labeled as one serving will be especially helpful for those watching their weight, and glucose numbers.
June. At an ADA sponsored symposium, addressing diabetes patients’ quality of life (QOL) issues was emphasized since they “greatly impact” treatment outcomes. QOL issues include anxiety about living with diabetes, managing treatment and medication costs, and the need for supportive communication.
July. In collaboration with the ADA, the online meal store Chef’d launched a meal-kit delivery selection of nutritious, easy to prepare meals for those with, or at risk of diabetes (link below). Meal-kits are available through this collaboration at any time, with no subscription or membership fees.
August. A county-level analysis of diabetes prevalence in the U.S. was published to help identify areas in greater need of public health resources. The data revealed a threefold difference between counties with the lowest diabetes prevalence (8.8 percent), and those with the highest (26.4 percent).
September. The ADA announced Diabetes Dance Dare—a social media campaign for diabetes awareness that encourages people to get moving (link below). Participants share a video of themselves dancing, with the hashtag #DiabetesDanceDare, and are asked to dare three friends to do the same.
October. Updated ADA exercise guidelines recommend that people engage in three or more minutes of light activity every half hour during periods of prolonged sitting. Engaging in frequent activity improves glucose management, and longterm well-being.
November. Between 2002 and 2013 the cost of insulin nearly tripled. In response to this increase, the ADA Board of Directors released a resolution calling for supply chain pricing transparency to “ensure that no person with diabetes is denied affordable access to insulin.” The resolution calls for Congressional action and support.
December. In a letter to our Congressional leadership, the ADA expressed opposition to a repeal of the ACA (Affordable Care Act) without an immediate alternative being in place. The letter states, “Congress should not risk critical advancements made under the ACA without simultaneously enacting a replacement plan that maintains or improves existing access to comprehensive, affordable health care coverage.”
To checkout more of this year’s diabetes-related events, go to the press release listing on the ADA website (link below), or on the websites of other diabetes associations, and foundations.