As we close the book on 2010 and prepare ourselves for the 2011 legislative year and the start
of the restructured 112th Congress we wanted to take a look back at what has been accomplished and
where AADE is heading.
What the AADE Advocacy network has accomplished:
- The CDE provision was included in the House version of the Healthcare Reform Package as well as
the Senate Finance Committee’s (SFC) version. Although the language was omitted from the final
'merged' bill between SFC and the Health Education Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee we cannot
view this as a failure. This was the first time our language was included in any bill of this size
and importance. The language was not omitted due to any policy concerns or opposition to the
provision by any Senator but simply an assumption, by some, that the provision may not be essential
to the provision of DSMT care. But thanks to your hard work and persistence we are poised to dispel
these assumptions in the new Congress.
- AADE commissioned
Dobson DaVanzo & Associates, LLC
(Dobson | DaVanzo) to create a cost estimate of
H.R. 2425 over the ten year period from
2011 through 2020 using Congressional Budget Office (CBO) scoring methodology. One of the major
obstacles we faced with getting support for the legislation was proving its cost effectiveness.
This study showed Members of Congress that the legislation was budget neutral and further proved it
to be a necessary to designate Certified Diabetes Educators (CDEs) as providers of Diabetes
Self-Management Training (DSMT) under the Medicare program.
- In an effort to gain recognition of the qualified diabetes educator, AADE embarked on a
diabetes educator state licensure initiative. Legislation (H.B. 490) was introduced in the state of
Kentucky requiring licensure to provide diabetes education. The bill, in its first attempt, passed
the Kentucky state House 96 – 0 but was derailed before reaching the state Senate by an exhausted
budget battle that lasted till the closing minutes of the 2010 state legislative session.
- With generous contributions from
Medtronic, over 75 AADE members were able to
travel to Washington, DC for the first-of-its-kind, two-day public policy forum. We are currently
discussing a similar event to be held in 2011.
- In the midst of major races for Senate and House seats and focus on debates and votes over
major legislation you still made your voice heard in Washington. We close out the 111th Congress
with 50 co-sponsors for H.R 2425 and 13 co-sponsors for
S. 3211. These numbers do not include
Senator Shaheen and Rep. DeGette.
- Because of your word of mouth and efforts to share the action alerts you have helped build the
AADE advocacy database up to over 16,000 subscribers. This is leaps and bounds from where we were
going into the 111th Congress and puts us in a nice position to begin the 112th. Additionally,
during this Congress you have generated more calls, sent more letters, attended more town halls and
have made more personal visits with your members of Congress than in any of the previous
What’s coming in 2011:
- Our two Champion Members of Congress U.S. Representative Diana DeGette (D-CO 1st) and Senator
Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) are positioned to re-introduce the Diabetes Self-Management Training Acts in
the House and Senate at the start of the 112th Congress.
- We will be re-introducing the Diabetes Educator Licensure legislation in the state of Kentucky
as well as introducing the legislation for the first time in the state of Indiana. We are
continuing to research state diabetes trends and statistics to determine which states will follow.
To read more or listen to the audio conference calls
- We are continuing to pursue fair reimbursement for DSMT to reflect the value of the diabetes
educator and the services they provide.
- We will continue to strengthen and build relationships with stakeholder groups, including
government agencies, congressional representatives and healthcare patient and provider
organizations to gain more wide spread support for the AADE legislative agenda.
- With the help of our advocacy network we will increase awareness and build stronger public
support for the AADE legislative agenda.
In spite of all of the debate over healthcare related issues over the past two years you have
accomplished quite a bit and set a new standard. With the successes we have achieved and the recent
changes we should all be very optimistic going into the new Congress. Senator Shaheen is expected
to be appointed the Democratic co-chair of the Senate Diabetes Caucus. Rep. DeGette is the
Democratic co-chair of the House diabetes caucus and Ed Whitfield (R-KY 1st) is expected is to be
appointed the Republican co-chair (there is a strong group of diabetes education advocates in his
district). Senator Mark Kirk, an original co-sponsor of H.R. 2425, has moved from the House to the
Senate after winning the Illinois vote this past November.
With many changes happening on both sides of Congress we are still waiting for a full list of
all relevant committee assignments (ways and mean, energy and commerce and Senate finance) so we
can begin to identify key districts or states to target.
One thing to remember as we move forward is that regardless of who you voted for (or did not
vote for) the Representative in your district or Senators in your state work for you. The
legislative agenda has been, and will always be, bi-partisan and about the educator and the patient
and taking the necessary steps to alleviate the epidemic that is diabetes.
Together you have made your voice heard in Washington and in the states. Now let’s take the next
step and get the legislation passed.
Get ready for a very active 2011!
From all of us at AADE Advocacy have a safe and Happy Holidays and a Joyous New Year!
If you have any questions or concerns please contact James Specker at
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