Tester Delivers $1 million to Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes for Diabetes Prevention

(U.S. Senate) – Vice Chairman of the Senate Indian Affairs Committee Jon Tester announced today that the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes will receive more than $1 million to expand their diabetes treatment and prevention program.

“Diabetes is a devastating disease that disproportionally affects Native American communities,” said Tester. “These additional resources will help the Salish and Kootenai tribes as they fight against this disease and work to improve access to quality health care for their families, friends, and neighbors.”

“The Salish and Kootenai Tribes are very appreciative of the Senator’s efforts to assist them in arresting this scourge,” said Kevin Howlett, CSKT’s Tribal Health Director. “These additional resources will be of significant assistance in the implementation of preventative programs to secure a diabetes-free future for future generations.”

Last year, Tester helped pass legislation to reauthorize the Special Diabetes Program for Indians (SDPI), which provides grants to support treatment for Native Americans living with diabetes, and helps fund prevention programs to stop the growth of this epidemic.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, on average, Native Americans are twice as likely to be diagnosed with diabetes than the rest of the nation.

Tester is continuing his efforts to permanently fund SDPI, which was reauthorized for two years and is set to expire in 2018.

This grant is administered through the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.