Press release

American Diabetes Association and the Baxter International Foundation Partner in Health Equity Initiative to Address Barriers to Diabetes Management

February 8, 2021 | Arlington, Virginia and Deerfield, Illinois

Today, the American Diabetes Association® (ADA) and the Baxter International Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Baxter International Inc., announced a new partnership as part of the ADA’s Health Equity Now (HEN) platform to address health disparities for people with diabetes in Chicago’s underserved Black communities. Made possible with a three-year, $2 million grant from the Baxter International Foundation, the community-based program will focus on nutrition and technology as key drivers in removing barriers to diabetes care and promoting diabetes prevention.

“Health inequity is real, and it contributes to worse outcomes and higher risk for people with diabetes, a reality that has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 epidemic,” said Tracey D. Brown, chief executive officer of the American Diabetes Association. "By tearing down systemic barriers to basic, critical resources – like technology and healthy foods – we can empower people of color who live with diabetes to take control of their health and live better, fuller lives."

“In pursuit of our mission to save and sustain lives, we are committed to tackling inequities in health care,” said José (Joe) E. Almeida, chairman and chief executive officer of Baxter. “We are proud to partner with the ADA to address longstanding, disproportionate barriers to quality care that are especially acute within underserved Black communities and among the millions of Americans living with diabetes.” 

The risk of being diagnosed with diabetes among Black Americans is 77% higher when compared to white adultsi. Amid COVID-19, disparities have been exasperated, with 50% of low-income Americans with diabetes having lost some or all income during the pandemicii.  

To address health inequities, the ADA and Baxter International Foundation project will aim to tear down barriers that limit access to vital resources and empower participants to effectively prevent and manage diabetes. A primary focus of the program will be to collaborate with community partners to identify local challenges and to distribute healthy food resources, innovative digital health technologies and educational information to low-income and minority members of Chicago’s diabetes community. 

The ADA and Baxter International Foundation initiative reflects Baxter’s efforts to take additional actions to achieve meaningful change, building on Baxter’s 2020 launch of ACT: Activating Change Today, a multidimensional and multiyear initiative to advance inclusion and racial justice.

[I] Ying-Ying Meng et al. Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Diabetes Care and Impact of Vendor-Based Disease Management Programs. Diabetes Care, May 2016.

[II] Diabetes and COVID-19: New Data Quantifies Extraordinary Challenges Faced by Americans with Diabetes During Pandemic. Survey by dQ&A and The American Diabetes Association. July 2020.

# # #


About the American Diabetes Association
Every day more than 4,000 people are newly diagnosed with diabetes in America. More than 122 million Americans have diabetes or prediabetes and are striving to manage their lives while living with the disease. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) is the nation’s leading voluntary health organization fighting to bend the curve on the diabetes epidemic and help people living with diabetes thrive. For 80 years the ADA has been driving discovery and research to treat, manage and prevent diabetes, while working relentlessly for a cure. We help people with diabetes thrive by fighting for their rights and developing programs, advocacy and education designed to improve their quality of life. Diabetes has brought us together. What we do next will make us Connected for Life. To learn more or to get involved, visit us at or call 1-800-DIABETES (1-800-342-2383). Join the fight with us on Facebook (American Diabetes Association), Twitter (@AmDiabetesAssn) and Instagram (@AmDiabetesAssn).

About the Baxter International Foundation
Every day, Baxter and the Baxter International Foundation strive to make a meaningful difference in the lives of people who depend on our products, and in the communities where our employees live and work. The Foundation helps advance Baxter’s mission to save and sustain lives by partnering with organizations around the world to increase access to healthcare for the underserved, develop the next generation of innovators who will lead the way in advancing healthcare and to create a positive, long-lasting impact in communities globally. For more information, please visit our Corporate Responsibility page.

Baxter is a registered trademark of Baxter International Inc.