By Deagan Urbatsch
Cronkite News 

As deadline looms, Congress urged to reauthorize diabetes program for Native Americans


Last updated 8/6/2020 at 10:42am

Anya Magnuson/Cronkite News

Arizona senators are seeking renewal of a program that helps fight diabetes in Indian Country. Native American adults have the highest rates of diabetes in the country, and COVID-19 is more dangerous and deadly for people with the chronic disease.

PHOENIX-Arizona's U.S. senators are pushing legislation to renew a federal program that fights diabetes in Indian Country-an initiative tribal leaders say is vital amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

"The Special Diabetes Program for Indians is critical in our fight against diabetes and viruses such as COVID-19," Navajo President Jonathan Nez said in a statement. "If we want our people to be stronger and able to prevent and fight off viruses, then we need our people to eat healthy foods and build their immune system."

The reauthorization bill-introduced by Sen. Martha McSally, Republican, and co-s...

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