HHS Awards $139 Million for Special Diabetes Program for Indians

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Indian Health Service (IHS), is investing $139 million in funding for the fiscal year 2023 Special Diabetes Program for Indians (SDPI) to provide diabetes prevention and treatment services for American Indian and Alaska Native communities.

Funding awards have been made to 302 tribal, urban, and IHS sites in 35 states under the new, five-year grant cycle that began on Jan. 1, 2023. Eleven organizations and tribes are being funded for the first time.

“HHS is committed to eliminating health disparities in communities across the country,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “American Indian and Alaska Native communities have historically had disproportionately higher rates of diabetes than other populations. Through education and outreach programs like the Special Diabetes Program for Indians, we are successfully implementing evidence-based and community-driven strategies to prevent and treat diabetes in tribal and urban Indian communities.”

Federal data show that the rate of diabetes-related kidney failure decreased by half after implementing population-based diabetes treatment and prevention services like SDPI. The prevalence of diabetic eye disease (retinopathy) has also fallen in American Indian and Alaska Native adults by more than 50 percent compared to reports from the 1980’s and 1990’s. This is a substantial reduction in the risk of vision problems and blindness in American Indian and Alaska Native adults with diabetes. Although it is not possible to determine specific reasons for these decreases, the diabetes prevention services provided by IHS, tribal and urban Indian health […]

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