Congressman Jeff Fortenberry

Representing the 1st District of Nebraska

Fortenberry Statement on 21st Century Cures Act

Dec 1, 2016
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) today issued the following statement on the passage of the 21st Century Cures Act:

In our Lincoln office, Monday, it was truly inspiring to meet so many young people working to raise awareness and find a cure for juvenile type 1 diabetes (T1D), an autoimmune disease that affects 1.25 Americans. To take just one story, 24-year-old Meg Cooper—currently a student at Creighton University Law School—has lived with T1D for 5,526 days; lost 3,207 hours of sleep; received 33,756 finger pricks and had 19,786 needle injections. Growing up, her parents had to monitor her around-the-clock, making sure she ate when she didn't want to eat, holding her down to give her shots, testing her blood sugar levels throughout the day and night. Their enormous burden is nothing compared to the burden Meg must carry for the rest of her life. 

Hopefully, we can find a better way. 

Yesterday in the House, we passed the 21st Century Cures Act. Besides restructuring and streamlining the FDA drug approval process, the Cures Act will provide funds to the National Institute of Health (NIH) to research life-saving treatments for diseases like T1D. As I heard Monday, parents of children with type 1 juvenile diabetes must spend upwards of $50,000 to care for their children with this chronic condition. If we spend a little more now on research and technology, perhaps we can dramatically simplify care for patients and family, while lowering the burdensom costs and complications of diabetes.