When I was first diagnosed with diabetes in October 2002, my doctor first believed I had type 2 diabetes. It wasn’t until early 2003, after more testing that I learned of what I actually have: Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults, or LADA. LADA is more similar in symptoms and treatment to type 1 diabetes, and when I received the new diagnosis, I also got a lot more insight into what was happening in my body to better manage my diabetes.
The discovery of LADA in the 1970s is a great example of how medical research has made a positive impact in my life, and the lives of other people with diabetes. Research has made so many contributions to people with diabetes, including the opportunity to live long and productive lives.
In the 15 years since I was diagnosed, I’ve seen improvements in Blood Glucose Monitoring accuracy, the rise of Continuous Glucose Monitoring, and advances in infusion sets and insulin pump therapy that bring us closer to an artificial pancreas. I have been amazed by new drug classes (both injected and oral) that create more options for people with diabetes. And I am hopeful about the many efforts on the horizon aimed at enhancing our lives and ultimately curing diabetes.
With 29 million Americans and 420 million people worldwide with diabetes, and with that number rapidly rising, the need to better understand diabetes and to find a cure is more critical than ever. And along with it, we need stronger advocacy to ensure sufficient funding for research and guarantee access to the right care for people with diabetes.
That’s why I’m so proud that we at Livongo are taking steps to fund vital research and advocacy programs. We’re announcing today that we’re partnering with four leading diabetes non-profits – the American Diabetes Association, Beyond Type 1, Diabetes Hands Foundation, and JDRF – to offer our program to their members. This partnership makes our program, which was previously offered only through health plans and large employers, available directly to consumers. But what makes this program special is that we will donate a portion of the proceeds to give back to fund the vital research and advocacy that will help us one day find a cure.
Because many of us at Livongo either have diabetes or have loved ones with diabetes, the comprehensive program we’re offering addresses the needs of people with diabetes directly, and removes a lot of the hassles and difficulties of diabetes while empowering our members to manage it better.
Our program includes our advanced blood glucose meter with a cellular chip that automatically uploads readings and provides instant insights, education with our team of Certified Diabetes Educators, and unlimited testing supplies shipped directly so that members can check as often as they want. It’s also the only program that offers support at critical moments for people with diabetes and the people who love them, including the option for text message updates for family members and 24/7 live support when your glucose reading is out of range.
I’m excited that this new program will fund vital research and advocacy programs. And, until there’s a cure, we can offer people with diabetes, regardless of their employer or their health plan a program that will them live better.
To sign up for Livongo and support your favorite diabetes nonprofit visit the specific partnership website:
- Beyond Type 1: beyondtype1.livongo.com
- Diabetes Hands Foundation: dhf.livongo.com
- JDRF: jdrf.livongo.com
Manny is the Senior Vice President for Member Experience and Strategic Product Partnerships at Livongo, and an internationally recognized health advocate who has lived with diabetes since 2002. Between 2007 and 2015, he combined his passions at Diabetes Hands Foundation (DHF), a nonprofit he co-founded driven by the belief that no one living with diabetes should feel alone. Under his leadership, DHF became a global leader in diabetes social media, and an influential group in diabetes advocacy.