Tag Archives: #HealtheVoices15

New and old videos.

I’m talking old and new videos on this Friday… let’s start with the new:

New Videos
First, new videos. So new, in fact, that they haven’t been made yet. But a video will be made on Tuesday, September 15 at 4:00 Eastern time here in the USA. That’s when I’ll be talking to Rick Phillips of TuDiabetes. We’ll spend the better part of an hour talking diabetes, blogging, and whatever else Rick wants to talk about. I hope you’ll join us. CLICK HERE to find out more. When the time comes, CLICK HERE to follow along and join the conversation.

I’m really looking forward to this.
Now… old videos:

Old Videos
Back in April, I was lucky enough to attend something called the HealtheVoices Conference. It was a terrific weekend where I met many other people living with chronic conditions like mine. The interactions, the connections made that weekend are having a lasting effect on me (Diabetes By The Numbers), and this week, I was reminded of them again when these videos were released. I wrote about the weekend here. At the end of the conference, we sat down with an interviewer and answered three questions. The answer to those three questions, from many different points of view, is below.

Note: Janssen Pharmaceuticals paid for my travel, hotel, and meals so I could attend the HealtheVoices Conference. All opinions, as usual, are my own.

Why should you view these videos? Because you’ll see and hear people living with chronic conditions, many of whom are not living with diabetes, who are just as passionate about what they advocate for as I am about advocating for better access to care, treatment, and medication for People living With Diabetes. They are also reaching out and building communities and inspiring others, and I thought you might like to see who some of them are.

And hey… there are some DOC people in there too. In the first two videos, you’ll see the always compelling Christel Marchand Aprigliano. The last video starts with me, and also includes Karen Graffeo and Kerri Sparling, who always sound waaaaay better than I do.

When I saw my part, and saw that I was tagged as a Type 2 Diabetes advocate, I paused for a moment…

Then I realized, yeah, I live with Type 1, but I’m an advocate for all People With Diabetes, so if you want to label me as a Type 2 advocate, then okay… because I’m that too.


I hope your Friday is a good one, and I hope your weekend is full of fun and excitement. And good glucose. Remember:

I support you… no conditions.

#HealtheVoices15: We are not alone.

April 17 through April 19, I attended the HealtheVoices Conference in Jersey City, New Jersey. Janssen Pharmaceuticals paid for my train travel, hotel, and meals so I could take part in this gathering. In case you’re wondering, all opinions expressed here, or using the #HealtheVoices15 hashtag are entirely my own.
I spent last weekend at something called the HealtheVoices conference in Jersey City. Unlike all of the diabetes conferences I’ve attended in the past three years, this conference brought in people living with a host of different chronic conditions.

And you know what? I discovered we are not alone.

Okay… sure… I knew that People With Diabetes are not the only ones living with a chronic condition. But when you get immersed in a cause, after a while, you tend to forget about the others who are out there working on different causes, lifting up others living with a different disease. One of the really cool things about this weekend was the opportunity to see and hear from people living with and advocating for those living with Chron’s disease, HIV, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Cardiovascular issues, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, and so much more.

The presentations were well thought out and well presented. I liked learning how people are making a mark in their own patient communities. There were also presentations where we learned about the legal ins and outs of writing a blog, how to take an idea and get it funded, and the importance of telling our stories online and engaging with others to create a better community.

And just like the diabetes conferences, there was real value in the one-to-one, peer-to-peer conversations that happened over breakfast, lunch, dinner, and between sessions. Some of the best ideas I heard, and some of the most inspiring things I witnessed, came in those quiet moments where someone was able to share what they’ve experienced and what they’ve learned with a bigger audience. I got to watch groups from other conditions gather and share and laugh together, just like PWDs do. I found that the power of “me too” isn’t exclusive to diabetes.

So by now, you may be asking: What about the diabetes people in attendance? Well, let me tell you… the diabetes team absolutely rocked it this weekend.
Cherise, Karen, Kim, and also Christel and Kerri (who also presented and was on the advisory panel for this conference) were sponges who spent equal time gathering information, listening to others, and sharing their stories and tips with others. They were tweeting like crazy and asking questions and engaging in conversation. One of the other things I learned about this weekend is that we’ve accomplished an awful lot all on our own.

I should also take a moment to thank the people at Janssen who gave up their weekend for this event. Thanks especially to Rachel Yurchak and Caroline Pavis, and to the people whose last names I don’t remember, like Stephanie and Beth. You made us all feel welcomed and important.

I’d like to think I’ve met a few people that I’m proud to say are friends now. I’d also like to think that I’ve found a few new things to aid me in my advocacy efforts.

Listen… My diabetes community bubble is good. It helps me when I’m down, it inspires me to perform advocacy, it has changed my life in a positive way forever. The great thing about the HealtheVoices Conference was that I could see, and learn from, additional communities that are doing the same thing, with people who are just as inspiring, and who encourage me to do better and be better. I will never forget their stories.

Heading out again.

As the sun begins to break through again (thank you rain, but thank you sun!), I’m all packed and ready to head off to something called the HealtheVoices conference in Jersey City… wait for it… New Jersey.  It’s just across the Hudson river from Manhattan.

This is not just a diabetes conference– there will be a number of online patient advocates in attendance who are dealing with a myriad of medical conditions, including HIV, breast cancer, cardiovascular issues, Chron’s/colitis, and many others.  I’m very interested in getting ideas and perspective from people living with and affected by conditions that are not my own.

The conference has been put together by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, which, among other things, produces the Type 2 medication Invokana.

This is where I tell you that Janssen Pharmaceuticals is paying for my train travel, hotel, and meals so I can take part in this gathering.  In case you’re wondering, all opinions expressed here, or using the #HealtheVoices15 hashtag are entirely my own.

This is the first time a company has invited me, at their expense, to attend a conference.  Guess I should think about creating that disclosures page now.

If I can, I’ll let you know what’s happening when it’s happening. Otherwise, I’ll try to give you a recap later on.

I hope your weekend is off to a great start, and I hope the nasty weather stays away from your part of the world too. Talk to you Monday!

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