Usher advocates for diabetes awareness at Capitol Hill

Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

Usher made a surprise appearance on Capitol Hill Wednesday, urging lawmakers to make Medicare’s Diabetes Prevention Program more accessible to Americans.

“Today, just talking about Type 1 diabetes and early screening for Type 1 diabetes,” Usher told ABC News after his meetings.

Usher’s son Cinco was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes (T1D) in 2014. Before leaving, Usher acknowledged the issue was personal to him.

“Yeah, I’ve been able to share my story today. Hopefully, you’ll get a chance to hear more about it,” he said.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Type 1 diabetes was once called insulin-dependent or juvenile diabetes and often develops in children, teens and young adults, but it can happen at any age.

The CDC said the disease is thought to be caused by an autoimmune reaction. “This reaction destroys the cells in the pancreas that make insulin, called beta cells,” according to the agency’s website. “This process can go on for months or years before any symptoms appear.”

Usher was first spotted riding the Senate Subway with Georgia Sen. Raphael Warnock before making his way over to the House, meeting with House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries and other lawmakers.

Throughout the day, Usher met with lawmakers in both chambers about the SCREEN for Type 1 Diabetes Act, which aims to increase public awareness of the disease, including early detection of Type 1 diabetes.

Prior to leaving the Capitol, he shared his plan to continue fighting for the cause.

“It was my first time [up here] but it won’t be my last,” Usher said.

 

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