The Endocrine Society conducted a Hill Day over April 26, 27, and 28, where we brought together nearly 55 member clinicians, clinical researchers, and basic scientists from 25 states to meet with their Congressional representatives and discuss issues related to diabetes treatment, prevention, and research. Continuing security restrictions on Capitol Hill required that our meetings occur remotely through zoom and other video technologies rather than in person, but, as always, our members were exceptional endocrine advocates and we have already begun to see the impact of our Hill Day.
During these meetings, Society members urged Congress to pass legislation that would make insulin more affordable. Over the past couple of months, we’ve been successful in getting Congress’s attention about this issue. In March, the House voted on legislation that would cap patients’ out-of-pocket insulin costs at $35 per month for people on Medicare and private insurance. Senate leadership indicated that the Senate would consider legislation to address insulin affordability in May, making our Hill Day particularly timely and effective. Our clinician members shared stories with Congressional offices about their patients who have had to forego or ration their prescribed insulin due to cost and, consequently, jeopardized their health and safety. Our members urged Congress to pass insulin affordability legislation that addresses the drivers of rising insulin prices and lowers out-of-pocket costs for people who rely on insulin to manage their diabetes.
Our members urged Congress to pass insulin affordability legislation that addresses the drivers of rising insulin prices and lowers out-of-pocket costs for people who rely on insulin to manage their diabetes.
In addition to discussing insulin affordability, our members made funding requests for the fiscal year 2023 (FY 2023) related to diabetes prevention and research. Our members asked Congress to fully fund the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (NCCDPHP), the Division of Diabetes Translation (DDT), and the National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP). The NCCHPHP funds science-based programs that prevent chronic diseases, including the DDT and National DPP, which are two successful programs that help prevent type 2 diabetes.
On the research front, Society members called on Congress to continue the recent trajectory of steady, sustainable increases in funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) by providing the NIH with at least $50 billion in FY 2023. Our NIH-funded members discussed the importance of increased funding for the NIH, and the positive impact that federal funding has on research discoveries in their own districts and states. They also stressed the importance of supporting investigator-initiated research (RO1s) at the NIH.
The Endocrine Society will continue to urge Congress to address insulin affordability and fund diabetes prevention and research in FY 2023. Society members who were unable to participate in our virtual Hill Day, but still want to support insulin affordability, diabetes prevention, and diabetes research can do so by joining our online campaigns at www.endocrine.org/takeaction.
ENDO 2022 will take place June 11 – 14 in Atlanta, Ga. This will be our first in-person annual meeting in more than two years, and we hope to see you there. There will be several events and opportunities to learn more about the Endocrine Society’s advocacy accomplishments and our members who helped us achieve our advocacy goals:
- Visit the Endocrine Society Booth on the Exhibit Floor to see our interactive “Advocacy Walk of Fame” – What have we accomplished and our member champions;
- Join us at various times at the Career and Community Center on the Exhibit Floor to learn more about how you can participate in Endocrine Society Advocacy; and
- Visit the Advocacy Booth at the Special Interest Group Reception to learn more about what advocacy and policy issues the Endocrine Society is working on and how you can get involved.