RETURN TO MEMBER STORIES Howie Ngo
Seeing people smile makes me happy. I know if I’m healthy, I can put a smile on other people’s faces. HOWIE NGO Livongo Member
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Howie Ngo

His passion is helping others, and he works as a kidney dialysis technician. Livongo allows him to be at his best in his personal and professional life. Howie is both a member and evangelist for Livongo because he deeply understands its value in managing a chronic condition such as diabetes.

Tell us a little about you.

My name is Howie, and I’m a certified kidney dialysis technician. I travel to put smiles on people’s faces.

How did your journey with diabetes being?

One day, my co worker brought in a delicious looking King Cake, and I absolutely had to have a slice. Later that day, I started to feel funny. Fortunately my co-worker who brought the cake was a nurse. She recognized my symptoms and tested my blood sugar. It was dangerously high, and that’s how I found out I have diabetes.

What was your reaction to that news?

I learned I had to deal with a chronic medical condition and had no clue how to treat it. I felt like one of my dialysis patients who were just starting their treatment. How do I do this? I felt afraid, mad, lost. I had lots of unanswered questions. That really hit home.

Howie Ngo

I was reading all that I could but that really didn’t help because every meal is different. Could I eat it? What do I do if I eat too much? I had a number to call to get information but I had to pay a full co-pay to call and talk to someone. It didn’t matter if it was 15 minutes or 2 hours. Who can afford that? On top of that, it was always someone new. Someone who didn’t know anything about me, so I’d have to explain my issues over and over again. I also couldn’t test as often as I wanted because I couldn’t afford extra strips, and would have to ration throughout the month.

You’re pretty much out there on your own. It’s insane

Can you imagine that? You have diabetes so you have to monitor your blood sugar all the time, but insurance doesn’t give you enough strips for the month to treat your condition correctly. You can’t afford to speak to someone at the call centers because of all the co-pays, and the doctors don’t give you much help.

What was it like managing your condition before Livongo?

I reached out to my primary doctor, and he sent me to diabetes education. Before I knew it, co-pays were piling up. It didn’t matter if it was a diabetes education session or a 15-minute follow up call. It got to a point where I had to stop as I didn’t have the money for this. I actually started rationing how many times I was testing.

How did you come across Livongo?

After a year into my diabetes, a friend sent me information about Livongo. I read the brochure, and I couldn’t believe it. Unlimited supplies? Coaches? Weekly tips based on my history? I signed up immediately.

How has your Livongo experience been?

Using my new Livongo meter, it was really nice knowing I didn’t have to chase paper or remember to write down my results. All my information was uploaded automatically to the cloud.

And while I’m waiting for my sugar result, I get a new cool tip every time.

For example, I had a hamburger and fries, and my blood sugar was a little higher than I expected it to be. Livongo gave me advice tailored to me, and with this information, I’m now in better control of how to handle my eating habits.

Now that I’ve incorporated physical activity into my daily routine, I can actually make room for food I love. I just make up for it with exercise.

Howie Ngo Howie goes for a walk with his friend Stephanie Jones in downtown New Orleans.

What changes have you seen since the beginning of your Livongo journey?

Since I started Livongo, I pay close attention to what I’m eating, and I exercise more regularly. I’ve also lost some weight which feels good. I’m feeling better than ever.

How have you integrated Livongo into your life?

I’ve learned new ways to get ahead or deal with stuff so I don’t slip up. I get weekly emails that tell me the number of times I’ve tested myself and how my readings compare to previous weeks.

These include recipes, exercise tips, ways to keep myself in check. All based on me, not just a bunch of general information.

I love getting them. I learn a lot. And it makes me feel good knowing someone has my back. That I’m not alone in this.

What do you tell others at Livongo?

I call Livongo ‘my new best friend.’ And I want to tell other people with diabetes about the positive impact it’s had on my life.

The testimonials, statements, and opinions presented are applicable to the individuals depicted. Each member’s exact results and experience will be unique and individual to each member. The testimonials are voluntarily provided and are not paid.

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