What's Wrong With This Picture?
16 million Americans have diabetes. That's more than five times the number of Americans who have AIDS and breast cancer combined. Yet NIH research funding for diabetes is a mere shadow of AIDS and breast cancer funding. Why is that?
20/20, the ABC News program, asked that question of Senator Arlen Specter in an episode that aired on October 11, 1999. The Senator's explanation of the funding discrepency? Whoever panders most to Congress gets the most money.
Take ActionAIDS and breast cancer have high-profile celebrities who lobby tirelessly for funding and keep their diseases in the national spotlight, ensuring that they receive funding. Diabetes needs a similar battle plan. If you are interested in helping to make a difference, you can:
- Visit the local offices of your Senators and Representative. Explain what it is like to live, day to day, with diabetes. Bring your child. Have your child explain finger sticks, blood tests, feeling low. Make it personal.
- Write a letter to Senator Arlen Spector, stressing the need for increased funding for research into both prevention and cure of Type 1 diabetes. Here's how to reach the Senator:
Senator Arlen Spector
711 Hart Building
Washington DC 20510
- Contact members of the Senate Subcommitte on Labor, Health and Human Service and Education, which oversees NIH funding:
Arlen Specter, Chairman, Pennsylvania (e-mail Senator_Specter@Specter.senate.gov)
Thad Cochran, Mississippi (e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org)
Slade Gorton, Washington (web form for e-mail)
Judd Gregg, New Hampshire (email email@example.com)
Larry Craig, Idaho (web form for e-mail)
Kay Bailey Hutchison, Texas (e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org)
Ted Stevens, Alaska Jon Kyl, Arizona Tom Harkin, Ranking Member Iowa (e-mail email@example.com)
Ernest Hollings, South Carolina (web form for e-mail)
Daniel Inouye, Hawaii (web form for e-mail)
Harry Reid, Nevada (e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org)
Herb Kohl, Wisconsin (e-mail email@example.com)
Patty Murray, Washington (e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org)
Dianne Feinstein, California (e-mail email@example.com)
- Get involved with the advocacy arms of the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation and the American Diabetes Association.
Posted 13 October 1999
Last Updated: Thursday August 29, 2002 20:59:50
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