Established in 2004, the Diabetes Advisory Council at the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) worked to create a comprehensive statewide plan in order to reduce the burden of disease. In September of 2011, transitional meetings began to take place to turn the Diabetes Advisory Council into the Cardiovascular and Diabetes Coalition of Indiana (CADI), which expanded its scope to include heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. In January 2012, the council and coalition coordination meeting took place, followed by members of the coalition receiving their first email from CADI on April 12th, 2012. CADI helped to develop the Better Together Plan (BTP), which addressed all three chronic diseases together in 2015, and this plan was launched in 2016. The three main goals of the BTP were:
- All Hoosiers are living risk free of risk factors for heart disease, stroke, and diabetes.
- Individuals with increased risk levels for disease do not develop heart disease, stroke, or diabetes.
- Individuals with heart disease, stroke, or diabetes experience improved quality of life.
After developing the BTP and establishing its goals, BTP went on the road to be presented in 4 counties around Indiana in 2017. The four counties included South Bend, Gary, Fort Wayne, and Evansville.
Currently, CADI has moved to the Clinical Translational Sciences Institute (CTSI), located on the Indiana University Purdue University (IUPUI) campus, in order to utilize the connections of the coalition established through Purdue University and Indiana University. In 2019, CADI joined the Connections IN Health team and developed a new mission statement and vision for the coalition. CADI looks forward to helping with the burden of cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and stroke around the state through education, collaboration, awareness, advocacy, and access to care.
Interim Coalition Director
Donna Vandergraff is an Extension Specialist in the Department of Nutrition Science at Purdue University and the Purdue Liaison to the Community Health Partnerships of the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute (Indiana CTSI/CHeP). She is the PI for the Well-Connected Communities Initiative for Indiana and has been the Program Manager for the High Obesity CDC grant as well as the She is also a member of the Connections IN Health core team (Indiana CTSI/Indiana Department of Health partnership involving four statewide chronic disease coalitions). The focus of her recent work centers on coalition capacity building via Purdue Extension throughout the state. Prior to her work as an Extension Specialist, she directed the EFNEP program at Purdue for many years. Ms. Vandergraff received her Bachelors of Science Degree in Dietetics as well as her Master’s Degree in Nutrition with Health Promotion Emphasis from Purdue.