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March 1, 2002

Community Resources

Question from Mansfield Center, Connecticut, USA:

My 22 month old daughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes five months ago, and I go back and forth between accepting the situation and then being highly motivated to find out what can be done. I do not wish to engage myself in false hoping and yet I don't want to miss out when the time comes when the researchers find something that will actually help. Is there a best way to remain up-to-date on upcoming treatments? Is there a way to know what the chances are of my daughter actually being able to receive one of these treatments? There are so many of us longing for a cure. Also, I realize that the cost of this would be great. Would receiving a treatment be limited to those who could afford it?

Answer:

The best way to stay informed about treatment and possible new treatments for type�1 diabetes or eventual cures for diabetes is to be a member of American Diabetes Association and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Then you will automatically get the latest information in Diabetes Forecast and Diabetes Countdown. Also, Diabetes Interview is an excellent (and sometimes provocative) monthly magazine that highlights new research as well. Your diabetes team will also know of new developments and can place these in perspective.

There is no immediate cure on the horizon. However, remember that we were still building polio hospitals and wards when the polio vaccines were being tried. (I actually trained in one such facility in Los Angeles!) Research takes time and lots of research funding. Make sure that your congressmen and women as well as Senators support diabetes research from the NIH and do not limit research for political reassigns. Write to them and get all your friends and relatives to do the same — not just for diabetes but for health care research in general. Since so much research around the world comes from the NIH budget, this is a good way to make things happen in the future.

SB

[Editor’s comment: In addition to the resources Dr. Brink mentioned, our What’s New has a lot of the latest available information. Receive an e-mail copy of the What’s New page each Sunday evening by visiting the What’s New Subscription Page and filling out the registration form. It’s that easy to stay informed.

SS]