Thursday, July 10, 2014

Rolling up my sleeves

The things I experienced at Master Lab continue to rumble around in my head.  Despite dealing with an illness since my return, I can’t stop thinking about what to do next.  In fact, I’m so frustrated about not feeling up to sitting at the computer, hammering away to express my thoughts, that I’m writing this post with pen and paper.  So what’s next?

We learned that we, as advocates, need to speak up in a united way about policies and bills before Congress that will have an impact on people with diabetes.  Filling out the survey that I mentioned in my first Master Lab post will allow all of us to be informed when these types of events occur.  No need to wait though, there’s something we can do now.  

The National Diabetes Clinical Care Commission Act (HB 1074 and SB 539) has been introduced and needs the support of our Congressmen.  Both bills are identical and seek to “create a commission comprised of diabetes experts, primary care physicians, other health care professionals, patients, and representatives from the federal agencies most involved in diabetes research, prevention and care.” (DHF’s words) There are currently 30+ Federal agencies that are involved in diabetes policy but they might not be coordinating their efforts, wasting time and resources. (Big surprise).  This commission would help to keep the focus on us, the patients.

I’m not big on politics, in fact it makes me bat-shit crazy, but I’m smart enough to realize that we have to play the game in order for the lives of PWD to continue to improve.  I can write a letter.  I can send a tweet.  You can too.  Being an advocate doesn’t mean that you have to go to conferences or write a blog, it simply means to speak up for something or someone you care about.  Raise your voice to make a difference.  Come on, you can to it!

You can go here for a list of Representatives by state and here for a list of Senators.  If you click on their name you will go to their website and can find their Twitter handles and such. (See?  I’ve done half the work for you.)  Drop them a line encouraging them to co-sponsor and support this bill.  They represent you so make sure they know what you want them to do on your behalf.  

If thinking of what to say has you stumped, let the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists do the work for you.  Go here and fill out the form.  There is already a letter there that you just have to edit to reflect that it’s coming from a patient and not a doctor.  It took me less than 5 minutes and my Senators will receive an email from me.
I know it’s not easy to speak up, but it’s important.  If you can spend 30 minutes on the internet watching cat videos, you can spend a few minutes to contact your Congressmen and tell them to get to work for you!

Phew!  That writing long-hand crap is exhausting! Then I had to come here and type it and add all the links!  Time for a nap.


  1. Starting with Strip Safely a year ago, I have become increasingly comfortable contacting my senators and representative. I hope it makes a difference, but it is frustrating because I have never gotten a response to any of my letters, emails, or Tweets. But I'm willing to keep trying:-)

    1. Laddie, I've also not gotten much response in my past attempts at asking for help. However, one of the things we learned at Master Lab is that it takes many, many voices speaking about the same thing to get a response. Even if they aren't answering our emails, they're hearing us and we need to shout louder! Thanks for helping.

  2. Go Kate Go! Thanks for getting the information out there.

  3. Hope the nap helps you feel better very soon!


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