Science and technology is advancing everyday to help us find a cure for arthritis. And, with last week’s passage of the 21st Century Cures Act (H.R. 6) by the U.S. House of Representatives, we’re one step closer to bringing discoveries out of the lab and into the hands of people who need them most.
“It’s an important step forward for people with arthritis that members of the House of Representatives have come together to eliminate speedbumps in drug development and to provide considerably more resources to the NIH and FDA to make drug delivery and the potential for cures so much greater,” says Sandie Preiss, vice president of advocacy and access for the Arthritis Foundation.
The Arthritis Foundation is extremely grateful for the 800 Arthritis Foundation Advocates who penned and sent letters to their representatives in support of the 21st Century Cures Act. This grassroots involvement highlights an 85 percent surge in the number of Arthritis Foundation Advocates in the first half of 2015.
“We often speak for our constituents in Washington DC, but this is a perfect illustration that all politics really is local,” says Preiss. “Elected officials want to hear from their constituents about what is important to them. The constituent voice is critical when decision makers are facing a vote.”
Next, the Senate has to pass the 21st Century Cures Act. If passed as is, the legislation will provide nearly $9.5 billion in funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to speed up the pipeline for cures and innovation. Once again, as our most powerful weapon, Arthritis Foundation Advocates are called to contact their senators to express their support for the 21st Century Cures Act.
“Our Advocates are incredibly powerful because they know what it’s like to fight these everyday battles,” says Preiss. “Their stories inspire us and important decision makers to help remove the barriers that people with arthritis face everyday.”
- Learn more about the 21st Century Cures Act.
- Learn more about how you can join the movement and become an Arthritis Advocate.