Tuesday, March 6, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana
"The Diabetes briefing provided very valuable information to Indiana legislators. This is an important public health topic that has a significant impact on health care costs, economic development and quality of life. The materials and information will help policy makers identify state-level strategies and community-level actions that will improve outcomes for those impacted by this chronic disease."
Indiana State Briefing Host and WIG Board of Directors Chair Representative Terri Austin
Women In Government, along with Women In Government's Board of Directors Chair, Indiana Representative Terri Austin, hosted a state briefing on diabetes for state legislators and invited guests on Tuesday, March 6, 2012, from 11:30 am – 1:30 pm at McCormick & Schmick’s restaurant in Indianapolis.
An estimated 26 million adults and children in the U.S. have diabetes. Of these, 7 million cases have gone undiagnosed. Even more troubling is that 79 million U.S. adults have pre-diabetes, a condition that can increase a person’s risk of diabetes type 2, heart disease, and stroke. If the trend continues, one in three Americans could have diabetes by 2050.
In response to these compelling statistics, in January 2011, Women In Government launched a three-year campaign, the Diabetes Health Challenge, with the intent to help state policymakers fight this debilitating disease through enacting sound public policies. As a result of these ongoing efforts, Women In Government recognized the need for a forum through which policymakers can access up-to-date information and data specific to their states, share best practices, and brainstorm effective policy solutions.
In 2010, the rate of diabetes in Indiana was 11.13 percent, ranked 18th highest of all 50 states and the District of Columbia. If current trends continue, Indiana’s rate of diabetes could reach almost 15 percent by 2025, affecting an estimated one million people. Furthermore, in 2007, the direct and indirect cost of diabetes within the state amounted to $3.1 billion, a significant financial figure.
The goal of the state briefing was to both inform – through use of specific state data – a wide group of state stakeholders about diabetes and opportunities in their states to increase legislative or policy activity around the topic. George Huntley, the former National Board Chair for the American Diabetes Association, and Dr. Carmella Evans-Molina, President of the American Diabetes Association - Indiana Community Leadership Board, were on-hand at the briefing to present the latest information and findings, assist participants in identifying priority issues that state legislators could implement, and collaborate in strategizing potential policy solutions for addressing diabetes in the state. View Dr. Evans-Molina's presenation here, and to learn more about diabetes advocacy, please view Mr. Huntley's presentation here. Invited participants included all women state legislators, as well as other legislators interested in diabetes policies, and stakeholders from the healthcare industry, medical practitioners, and patient organizations.
Visit Representative Terri Austin's website to learn more about her work on the dramatic effect diabetes has on both the U.S. and the health of its citizens, and listen to her PSA on the issue.
Visit Women In Government's Facebook and Twitter pages to view pictures and updates from the event.
For more policy information, please contact:
202.333.0825 ext. 211
For more sponsor information, please contact:
Martha Bourtosos Orzechowski
Director of Development
202.333.0825 ext. 210