Washington D.C.—Congressman Eliot L. Engel, a member of the House Congressional Diabetes Caucus, has reintroduced H.R. 5423, the Gestational Diabetes (GEDI) Act, a bill that aims to reduce incidences of gestational diabetes and the development of type 2 diabetes in women and children. This bill is supported by the American Diabetes Association and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Gestational diabetes occurs in pregnant women who have never had diabetes, but have high blood glucose (sugar) levels during their pregnancies and cannot make and use the insulin they need. Gestational diabetes can lead to health problems for affected babies, and increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes for both mother and child.
“Congress can and should do more to address gestational diabetes, which affects as many as 9.2% of all pregnancies in the U.S.,” said Congressman Engel. “This bill will help us better understand gestational diabetes and, in turn, allow us to better treat this condition and improve health outcomes for both moms and babies.”
Congressman Engel’s bill seeks to enhance awareness of gestational diabetes and improve outcomes for both mothers and their babies by:
• Developing a multi-site gestational diabetes research project with the CDC to enhance surveillance and public health research on gestational diabetes;
• Providing grants to reduce the incidence of gestational diabetes; and
• Expanding research focused on investigating gestational diabetes and available treatments and therapies.
“On behalf of the 114 million Americans with diabetes or prediabetes, I am grateful to Congressman Engel’s leadership in introducing the Gestational Diabetes Act (H.R. 5423). Gestational diabetes impacts more than nine percent of pregnancies in the Unites States, and yet we are not doing enough to address this issue. By harnessing CDC's expertise in research and translational science, we can better work towards reducing the number of women with gestational diabetes and the number of women and children who develop type 2 diabetes later in life, creating a healthier future,” said LaShawn McIver, MD, MPH, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs & Advocacy, American Diabetes Association.
“Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), one of the most common clinical issues facing our pregnant patients, and can have serious consequences for both mother and baby. ACOG is thrilled to support the GEDI Act, which would provide crucial funding for both public health research and community education to ensure women affected by this condition are getting the care and follow up that they need. Thank you, Representative Engel, for shedding light on this important public health issue,” said Haywood L. Brown, M.D., President of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
The GEDI Act was reintroduced with four original cosponsors: Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva (D-AZ), Congresswoman Betty McCollum (D-MN), Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA) and Congressman Mark Pocan (D-WI).
Please note this press release was originally published on April 4, 2018 by Congressman Engel’s House of Representative’s office and posted to this website no sooner than 72 hours after initial publication.