This collaboration post with Sara was initially scheduled to be posted on another diabetes website, but unfortunately plans changed. Rather than have that time and effort spent be for nothing, we decided to post it our own sites. As always, thanks for reading!
We were lucky to be among the ePatients awarded scholarships to attend Medicine X at Stanford, and while our expectations varied going into the conference based on whether we’d been there before, we can safely say that the 72-hour sprint in Palo Alto will be on our minds for quite some time.
Bottom line: Medicine X is a conference unlike any other conference we have attended. In attending, we both came away with a new sense of purpose and a greater understanding that patient advocacy stretches far beyond diabetes, or cancer, or chronic pain: as patient advocates, we’re truly in this together.
We so excited
Sara and I talked about Sonny Vu’s statements on the latest episode of my podcast. Rather than recommend you listen to the full podcast (even though you should, it was a great recap), I’ve pulled out the important part for the sake of this post.
I want to reiterate one of the closing remarks I made about this whole topic: Medicine X was the perfect setting to have this happen.
Medicine X is all about bringing pieces of the healthcare conversation together in an accessible environment. Under different circumstances, I would likely be too intimidated to talk to big time Silicon Valley folks, internationally known doctors and researchers, and people who have spent more time thinking about health care than I’ve been alive. Medicine X removes that barrier.
I think it’s official. Sunglasses or no sunglasses, the raised eyebrow is my “selfie” protocol.
But please, don’t ever let me say the word “selfie” out loud. You have my permission to hit me if I ever use that word with any sincerity.
Medicine X is a little over 12 hours in my rear view mirror and there’s a lot to discuss – far too much to cover in a single blog post. But since you’re here, I want to give you a rough estimate of the stuff you can expect from me over the next couple of weeks as I digest the past three days.
Sara and I will be combining powers to give impressions of the conference some time soon. I think it will provide a well-rounded picture of the weekend given the variety of expectations for the conference. Having gone to Medicine X last year, our perspectives leading up to the conference were no doubt going to be different.
At some point I’m going to start curating my tweets for a lengthy Storify post. I’ll be sure to pepper in pictures from the Medicine X Flickr account as well to paint a clear picture of what I was a part of.
And of course there will be my impressions on the panel I moderated – which was awesome.
There are a few other stand-out moments that I want to take the time to dissect for your and my pleasure. Even though I went through this last year, it’s still hard to comprehend how so much could be fit into such a short timeframe.
(That’s me with Dr. Larry Chu, the conference director. He let me wear his Google Glasses for nearly 3 hours. That’s the kind of awesome the weekend included.)
I appreciate your patience as I try to figure out exactly what I want to say about all of this, but I think the fact that there’s so much to talk about is a good thing.
Dont forget to check out my Storify post on my Medicine X experience.
Disclosure: I was awarded a partial scholarship to attend Medicine X this year. All other expenses, including the remainder of the registration was paid out of pocket. In case there was any doubt, I’m writing about this stuff for me.
It’s 6:38am as I write this. By this time tomorrow (pacific time), I’ll be preparing to get on the group shuttle from my hotel to the main campus at Stanford and wait in line for my registration packet.
This time tomorrow three hours from now, I’ll be moderating a panel of ePatients that is hopefully going well. We’re supposed to set the tone for the rest of the conference – no pressure there.
Here’s what you can expect over the next few days from me.
1. Lots, and lots of tweets. Follow me @iam_spartacus – I think there’s a widget on the sidebar here in case you want a quick glance at my goings on. And the primary hashtag is #MedX.
Speaking of hashtags…
I saw this on my Facebook Timeline after recording another episode of my podcast, Just Talking. I’m glad I saw this after the recording. I don’t think I would have been able to focus on the conversation if I did things in a different order.
This is mind blowing, incredibly humbling, and worth every second of your time (the video is about 5 minutes long).
After sleeping in, for whatever that’s worth considering the time difference, I spent most of the day wandering Seattle’s Waterfront and Downtown areas.
The final count from my Canon T2i was 156 pictures. You can see them all in this handy dandy Flickr album. Here are a few of my favorites.
If you can’t wait for the evening upload, you can always follow my adventures on Instagram.
My first supply of Dexcom G4 sensors came in December – it’s August. You can do the math on that one.
And this fountain holds approximately 168 ounces of water. The one the girls were previously using held 40 ounces. Again, you can do the math.
I got my bloodwork done for my upcoming endocrinologist appointment in record time. Now the waiting game beings leading up to my next chat with my endocrinologist. I’m guessing my A1c will be higher than my last few appointments, which I would feel comfortable attributing to stress over the past month. I’m also anticipating no insight or genuine conversation with my endo, which I attribute to him not being the most conversational of doctors.
I know “if it ain’t broke” isn’t the best approach when it comes to managing my diabetes, but I don’t want to deal with the hassle of looking for a new endocrinologist out here. I won’t seek this specific change until it’s clear a change is needed. Given my track record of management over the past couple of years, I feel comfortable keeping this all on me. After all, I’m the guy bolusing. I’m the guy counting the carbs. I’m the guy trying to get back on the exercise horse, again.