Maryland State Briefing

March 15, 2012, Annapolis


"The information provided was easy to understand and useful.  The tools provided are truly lifesaving. The attendees were extremely grateful."

Maryland State Briefing Host and WIG Board of Director's Treasurer

Delegate Joseline Peña-Melnyk


 Women In Government along with Delegate Joseline Peña-Melnyk, the Black Caucus, the New American Caucus, and the Women’s Caucus hosted a state briefing on diabetes for state legislators and invited guests on Thursday, March 15, 2012, in Annapolis, Maryland. The Maryland State Briefing featured an introduction to Women In Government followed by a presentation on diabetes disparities from experts in the field, both clinical and state advocacy.

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 January 2011, responding to these compelling statistics, 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 Maryland was 11.15 percent, ranked 17th highest of all 50 states and the District of Columbia. If current trends continue, Maryland’s rate of diabetes could reach almost 16 percent by 2025, affecting an estimated 1.1million people. Additionally, almost 36 percent of all diabetic individuals in Maryland are African American, compared to four percent for Asian Americans, seven percent for Hispanic Americans, and 0.4 percent for Native Americans, highlighting a specific area of prevention and treatment focus. Furthermore, in 2007, the direct and indirect cost of diabetes within the state amounted to $3.8 billion, a significant financial figure.

Through use of specific state data, the goal of the state briefing was to both inform a wide group of state stakeholders about diabetes and discuss opportunities in their state to increase legislative or policy activity around the topic. Learn more by viewing the presentation from the event's first speaker Marilyn Dabady Lynk, PhD, the Program Manager at the Center on Health Disparities at Adventist HealthCare. Tracy Newsome from the American Diabetes Association, Live Empowered and Community Initiatives, was also 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. Invited participants include all women state legislators, as well as other legislators interested in diabetes policies, and stakeholders from the healthcare industry, medical practitioners, and patient organizations.

For more Policy information, please contact:

Brenna Kehew
Policy Associate
202.333.0825 ext. 211

For more sponsor information, please contact:

Sarah Mier
Development Manager
202.333.0825 ext. 246






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