The CARE Act, with bill number H.R. 3760, was introduced to the House of Representatives by U.S. Congressman Albio Sires (D-NJ13) on December 20, 2011. Congressman Smith is the seventh of 13 New Jersey Congressman to co-sponsor the bill, joining Leonard Lance (R-NJ7), Robert Andrews (D-NJ1), Rush Holt (D-NJ12), Steven Rothman (D-NJ9), Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ11) and the late Donald Payne (D-NJ10, 1989-2012).
This bill would amend the Public Health Service Act to provide for the expansion, intensification and coordination of the programs and activities of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) with respect to Tourette Syndrome.
“I am extremely pleased to co-sponsor the legislation of my friend and colleague, Congressman Albio Sires, to provide for expanded research and data collection regarding Tourette syndrome (TS),” Congressman Smith said. “I also believe the estimated prevalence of TS may be severely understated and our understanding of the disorders relationship to other neurobehavioral problems is grossly inadequate.”
Bill H.R. 3760 also would establish regional centers of excellence across the country to conduct research into the cause, diagnosis, early detection, prevention, control and treatment of Tourette Syndrome and associated neurological disorders such as OCD, ADD, ADHD, Asperger’s Syndrome, anxiety and depression.
NJCTS, the nation’s first center of excellence for TS, was established in 2004. It is the only agency in the New Jersey – and one that leads the nation – that supports the needs of children and families dealing with TS, an often misunderstood and misdiagnosed inherited neurological disorder characterized by repeated involuntary movements and uncontrollable vocal sounds called tics.
“Although victims of TS can expect a normal life expectancy, the disorder can absolutely devastate their lives, causing extreme stress and anxiety, and in many cases steal from individuals their potential for educational and social development,”
NCTS Executive Director Faith W. Rice believes support for individuals and families with Tourette Syndrome is something everyone can be a part of and notes how – with the co-sponsorship of Congressmen Smith, Lance and Frelinghuysen – H.R. 3760 very much is bi-partisan legislation.
“We are pleased that Congressman Smith has signed on with this important legislation and hope that other Congressman and Senators will follow in his footsteps,” Rice said. "New Jersey has changed the face of TS research, education and support through partnerships and collaborations, and we look forward to seeing more develop on behalf of the 1 in 100 children nationwide who show symptoms of Tourette Syndrome.”
The complete language of bill H.R. 3760 and other TS legislative press releases are available by visiting www.njcts.org. To register support for H.R. 3760, please visit POPVOX – which bridges the gap between the input the public wants to provide and the information Members of Congress want and need to receive – at https://www.popvox.com/