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The Medtronic 770G pump was released in the United States just a few weeks ago and Robe Howe is one of the first to use it. Rob shares his first impressions and tells us what he’d really like to see in pump technology. (Rob is a paid ambassador for Medtronic, but they did not clear or review his comments for this interview).

Rob & Stacey spend a lot of this episode on other issues, talking about whether people with type 1 are “disabled” and what it means to use that word. Rob talks about achievement bias (and explains what that involves) and a lot more. We also find out about his fun modeling gig with Express and about his COVID-adjusted wedding in 2020.

Previous episodes about Medtronic here, including our in-depth discussion about the 770G and what else is on tap.

Our first episode with Rob Howe (all about using so-called Walmart insulin)

In Tell Me Something Good – legislative action, a diabetes blog gets a shout out and a new tip makes a difference for a site location.

And Stacey makes her predictions for 2021.

This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Check out Stacey’s book: The World’s Worst Diabetes Mom!

Join the Diabetes Connections Facebook Group!

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Tell me something good links:

New Washington State Law Caps Insulin Price

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Episode Transcription 

Stacey Simms  0:00

Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dario Health. Manage your blood glucose levels increase your possibilities. By Gvoke Hypopen the first premixed auto injector for very low blood sugar, and by Dexcom take control of your diabetes and live life to the fullest with Dexcom.

Unknown Speaker  0:22

This is Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.

 

Stacey Simms  0:28

This week, Rob Howe is one of the first people in the US to use the new Medtronic 770Gpump. We’ll talk about that. But our conversation got a lot more personal, including a discussion about whether most people with diabetes consider themselves disabled and everything that goes along with using that word.

 

Unknown Speaker  0:47

I want  to say like I Rob Howe, professional athlete, the guy who’s goes and speaks and is like, you can do whatever you want. I identify as disabled, I am disabled, I have a disability. That doesn’t mean that I’m not going to wake up tomorrow. And if my blood sugar’s high, I’m just gonna quit and be like, you know, sayonara team

 

Stacey Simms  1:01

Rob is also a podcaster. And he turned a few questions around on me, we went a few places I wasn’t expecting, including my hard “no” stance on Disney guest passes from years ago, and a lot more. And we do talk a lot about the 770G as well.

In Tell me something good legislative action, a diabetes blog gets a shout out and a new tip makes a big difference for site location. Plus, at the very end of the show, I’m going to do my predictions for diabetes in 2021, technology,  community, and more.

 

Stacey Simms  1:32

This podcast is not intended as medical advice. If you have those kinds of questions, please contact your health care provider.

Welcome back to another week of the show. I am your host, Stacey Simms, and we aim to educate and inspire about diabetes with a focus on people who use insulin, my son was diagnosed with Type 1 14 years ago, my husband lives with type two, I don’t have any type of diabetes. I’m the broadcaster. And that is how you get the podcast.

I released an episode on New Year’s Day about the COVID vaccine. And we’ve had a big response to that the episode was about health care providers with type one who had received the very first batches some of the first people in the US to get that first of two COVID shots. But the response was mostly people wanting to know where they fall in the priority order for receiving it.

Dr. Ponder Dr. Steven Ponder was in that episode. And he’s an endocrinologist in Texas. He had been trying to get Texas to allow type one into the higher tier. But it looks like this is going to vary state to state, I would urge you to jump into our Facebook group. It’s Diabetes Connections, the group and I’m just start a thread. Let’s try to get everybody up to speed whatever state you’re in, link up the health department look up a news story that you know of let us know what’s happening where you live.

Here in North Carolina, they’re talking about chronic conditions for one of the phases but it’s not clear if it’s just type two with type one will be included. As Dr. Ponder said, How are they going to check? Right? Do we really want the people giving the vaccines to have to worry about you know, give me your paperwork or your type two type one. Where’s your doctor’s note? I mean, it’s already so much less efficient than we all had hoped. I do think they are making good progress. As I’m taping this at the end of the first week of January. Here in North Carolina, where I live, they have announced that they will be using the National Guard to help out which I think is terrific. And as I mentioned with a husband who’s got type two, with my 16 year old who has type one who is eligible for the vaccine, we are going to watch closely to see when it is our turn. But again, I’m hoping we can get a big Clearinghouse going in the Facebook group with information with sourced information about when and where the vaccine will be available, where you live.

My talk with Rob Howe about Medtronic and this talk really did turn into something more. It’s not a typical interview for the show. I think we’ll get to that in just a moment. But first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dario. And one of the things that makes diabetes management difficult for us. It really kind of annoys me and Benny, it’s not really the big picture stuff, right? It’s all the little tasks adding up. Are you sick of running out of strips? Do you need some direction or encouragement going forward with your diabetes management and with visibility into your trends help you on your wellness journey? The Daario diabetes success plan offers all of that and more. No more waiting in line at the pharmacy. No more searching online for answers. No more wondering about how you’re doing with your blood sugar levels, find out more go to My Dario dot com forward slash Diabetes Connections.

My guest this week has been on the show before with a very different focus. Rob Howe joined me two years ago to talk about so called Walmart insulin which he used for a while as kind of an experiment if you want to hear how it went. I will link up that episode from 2018. Just go to Diabetes connections.com click on this episode or the show notes wherever you’re listening We have a pretty robust search on the website as well if you prefer to search it that way.

Rob is the host of the podcast, diabetics doing things. He is a former Washington Generals player. That’s right. He’s the bad guy. He was on the bad guy team against the world-famous Harlem Globetrotters. And this year, Rob became a model in a very cool campaign for Express and he got married. So Rob has a lot going on. And we’ve talked about quite a bit of it here.

There is also a video of this interview over on our YouTube channel on Diabetes Connections over on YouTube, if you prefer to watch it’s kind of fun to be doing more video interviews, let me know what you think about that. In addition to the audio, Rob is a brand ambassador for Medtronic, and he started using their newest pump, the 770G in December, we talked about that, and then had a conversation about everything from the word disability to why I never got Benny, a guest assistance pass at Disney. In fact, I put my foot down and said no to what he calls achievement culture within the diabetes community.

Always great to catch up with Rob how from diabetics doing things, podcasts, and so many other things in the diabetes community. You become the go to emcee, I see you all over the place at virtual events. Thanks for jumping on. It’s great to talk to you again.

 

Rob Howe 6:13

Yeah, thanks so much for having me. I’ve become what I call, and literally no one else says this except me. I’m the host with the most Insulet on board. So yeah.

 

Stacey Simms  6:23

Oh, I’m gonna steal that the next time I introduce you, I’ll make sure to say that please

 

Rob Howe 6:26

  1. Please do.

 

Rob Howe 6:28

I love it. Well,

 

Stacey Simms  6:30

listen, we’ve got a lot to talk about today, I want to start off by just jumping in because the latest thing for you really has been not a change of technology. You’ve been a Medtronic guy for a long time. But you’ve got the latest version of Medtronic pump. So tell me, when did you start using the 770?

 

Rob Howe 6:49

Yeah, so I am very fortunate. I’ve worked with Medtronic for a long time. And I’ve been a patient of Medtronic for even longer. So today, as of recording, it’s December 16. And I think I’ve been on the Medtronic 770Gnow since December 1, right around there. So it was in the first wave of of Medtronic, folks, employees Ambassador group to get access to the new pump. And it’s exciting. I mean, I think for me, I’ve been on the 670 g now for almost three years. So you know, one of the criticisms of the new pump is that it really isn’t very different, in turn from a technological standpoint, except it does have what we’ve always been very critical. And I mean, we as the diabetes, greater community of the 670 was that there was no Bluetooth connectivity to the phone. So I think this is Medtronic response to say, Hey, we hear you we got to have Bluetooth connectivity. And it’s great. It actually, the app is super intuitive, the mini med mobile app and it has your basically your sensor glucose like you would normally see on your pump display, but it also has your 24 hour time and range. So just a quick little swipe, you can get over there and see your your 24 hour numbers, which is kind of nice, especially if you’ve had a really good day, you can see that you know those high time and range numbers. So it’s exciting. And you know, I think for people who are, you know, really into the nitty gritty, it’s also a new transmitter for the sensors. So it’s still the Guardian three sensor, but a new GL three transmitter, which just has a few of the, you know, annoying, calibration tweaks that some people have, I think more vocal people than I have have, for sure lamented. So the the new transmitter is excellent and has fixed a lot of the challenges from the early days.

 

Stacey Simms  8:26

We talked to Medtronic a couple of weeks ago, and I’ll link up that episode in the show notes here to go through all of the features and what’s coming next. But it really is interesting how so often these companies and it’s not just Medtronic, I would kind of compare it to Omnipod dash right so they have one version, then they almost have a stop gap, which has some improvements but isn’t the big shiny thing that we’re waiting for you know the if you’re looking at the technology so carefully, which will be the 780 which is out in Europe and will be out soon. But you know, I have heard a couple of people who have used Medtronic for a long time like you have say the phone stuff would be nice but I don’t really need it. And now that you have it, you really look at it more i mean i don’t have diabetes and so I’m trying to get myself from following Benny so often to not looking at it 24 seven, but was it really that different for you to kind of just look at your phone more than your pump

 

Rob Howe 9:15

right now. I’m operating mostly from home so there isn’t a you know, work meeting where I would feel better about pulling the phone out versus taking the pump out of my you know, pocket and I am an insulin pump in the pocket person so I don’t wear like a holster or anything like that. And obviously Medtronic pumps have tubing, but I think it’s nice to just be able to you know, you’re on the phone all day all day. Anyway, I’ll admit I spend a lot of time on my phone and being able to click over in the night. You know, I think that’s been the time that I’ve used the app the most when you know in when I’m laying in bed,

 

Stacey Simms  9:47

I think it’s huge to have it on the phone. My kid is a pump in the pocket kid too. And he would never look at it. If he didn’t have to. He’s on the phone and it would you say maybe a couple of directions. He it would be really a big deal. If he suddenly lost that which he hasn’t even had for that long, right? Well, anyway, you get used to.

 

Rob Howe 10:04

Exactly. And I think that’s where I think as consumers, and this is sort of my you know, before getting more and learning more about what goes into diabetes technology from a FDA approval standpoint, and all of the sort of hurdles that they have to go through, you know, I was sitting there streaming a movie on my iPhone on an airplane, and I’m like, wow, if I can stream a movie on my iPhone on an airplane, we for sure should be able to look at your blood sugar numbers on a phone. But I’m very much like Benny, I love the phone, very familiar with the interface, I use it quite a bit. So I think, you know, in terms of having that convenience, it’s just so nice. It’s kind of just takes away, you know, I think Medtronic has really done a nice job in past years. And also going forward of really relieving that mental burden and making diabetes integrated into your life. And this is definitely something that makes diabetes just more integrated in the way that you already use technology, the way that you’re already on your phone. And I can get a push notification. Now my alert on high if I’m, you know, I got my high alert set at 160 get the alert on high, it pops up in my phone, just like a normal notification. And I can take care of it then. So yeah, I really love it. And I think that’s kind of like what you said with Benny, you get really used to it really quickly of having it there and having those numbers all the time. So it’s just nice to have it a little bit more integrated into our everyday life.

 

Stacey Simms  11:15

Are you a big auto mode guy? Do you use the features of the 670. And now the 770

 

Rob Howe 11:21

I am I stay in auto mode. I’m a big auto mode guy. And I think the criticisms that I see of it online are fair, and it’s not perfect. And I think Medtronic has done a great job of talking about those, you know, initially, this was like 1.0 of the hybrid closed loop systems, you know, so the algorithm is now in technology world is a little dated. But now, like you said, mentioned 780 coming soon, in the US. You know, the next version of that, I think is really exciting. But for me, I’m an auto mode guy. And I think the the biggest example I’ll give for listeners is I love to play golf, I have a weekly golf round that I play on Sunday mornings, and I set it on auto mode. And before auto mode, I would go out and you know, my basil would be what it was and I have to set a temp target or attempt basil and you know, even before cgms I just basically have to have gummy bears stashed in my golf bag. And on auto mode. Thankfully, you know, I go in with no insulin on board in the morning if my morning starts off really smooth. And I can go through my entire round walking or in the cart and not have to worry about correcting and not have to worry about high so it’s it’s really nice. I love auto mode. That Blue Shield gives me a lot of confidence.

 

Stacey Simms  12:25

That’s awesome. It’s funny though, looking at as we’re recording this on video I can see into your house is basketball stuff all over the place. Now I know you’re big basketball player. We’ve talked about that we talked in the past. So I’m interested that you brought up golf and rather than basketball.

 

Rob Howe 12:38

Well, you know, I’m aging gracefully, Stacy. Like, you know, I think I still love playing basketball. And I think that’s one thing that sentimentally I think there’s been so many terrible things that have been taken from us because of COVID. And the thing that’s been really eating away at my heart, and my soul is not being able to play basketball and because it’s just not safe. And I think in Dallas, especially we have so many cases and I’ve been able to do some training in a gym, by myself wearing a mask, but I just missed competing and I think golf, you know, you’re competing against yourself. So it kind of scratches my itch a little bit. So that’s been my COVID pivot.

 

Stacey Simms  13:14

That’s awesome. I’ve been playing golf since I was 22. So I’ll take you out sometime when we got

 

Rob Howe 13:18

ready to say no more. I’m ready.

 

Stacey Simms  13:22

You know, one of the things that really made me smile in the last couple of weeks was that terrific video you posted. Your it was it was announcing the partnership you have with Medtronic now but the video itself was so great. It was you know, if you haven’t seen it, we’ll link it up. How would you describe that like an athlete grabbing a sponsorship or getting recruited for a team?

 

Rob Howe 13:42

Yeah, you know, I, I was stuck on this concept of signing day. And this announcement, this announcement kind of felt like that. And for me, you know, I’ve worked with Medtronic for a number of years as an ambassador as a consultant. And now kind of deepening that partnership into a more formal role. It just came to mind. And I thought, you know, this is true to who I am as an athlete, and seems like a fun way for and you know, that’s a big part of what we’re working on together is doing some outside the box, maybe not traditional Medtronic type announcements. And I would classify this as sort of in that realm. And I’m just very fortunate that my team and Medtronic is so on board with hearing sort of outside the box ideas. And so getting to produce this fake press conference about my signing day and learning that there are no Medtronic hats and having to get a Medtronic hat made for me to put on so now I have like the one on one of one Medtronic cat, which I love. It was really cool. And the response was great. And again, I just I’m glad that my team didn’t roll their eyes at the pitch. They were like, Oh, yeah, this actually sounds great. We’ll we’ll do this. And I can only imagine as it went through legal what legal was thinking of just reviewing that video, so very fun. That is funny. I

 

Stacey Simms  14:48

think I have one of the remaining animus shirts left in existence from what I used to do appearances for them.

 

Rob Howe 14:54

Yeah, you gotta gotta save that merge. It’s like it’s retro. You know?

 

Rob Howe 14:57

That’s really funny.

 

Stacey Simms  15:04

Right back to Robin just a moment, but first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by g Volk, and almost everyone who takes insulin has experienced a low blood sugar and that can be scary. A very low blood sugar is really scary. That’s where Jeeva kaipa pen comes in. It’s the first auto injector to treat very low blood sugar. chivo hypo pen is pre mixed and ready to go with no visible needle. That means it’s easy to use in usability studies, 99% of people were able to give GMO correctly. I’m so glad to have something new, find out more, go to Diabetes connections.com and click on the G book logo. g Vox shouldn’t be used in patients with pheochromocytoma or insulinoma visit g VOCA glucagon comm slash risk. Now back to rob, and he is talking about new technology that he’s looking forward to.

 

Rob Howe 15:52

I’m very excited about the integration of the phone as the software back end to the pumps and the devices. I think that adding diabetes technology to the Internet of Things is a huge milestone in healthcare. It’s a huge milestone for people with diabetes. And it’s just going to make this whole user experience more intuitive. I think the DIY loop community has shown how you know how powerful it can be when technology and people helping each other and really dialing in features that they need and that are important. And working with some of these larger manufacturers, I think kind of opened up this Pandora’s box of questions for these bigger companies to ask themselves are our technologies right for our customers, are we meeting them where they are, and I’m sure as you encountered in your conversations with Medtronic, that’s a big focus for them right now is meeting patients with diabetes where they are. So you know, you’ve seen this year now the acquisition of companion medical, to bring multiple daily injections into the Medtronic suite, which previously they were a pump company. And I think now they’re really focusing themselves on being a diabetes technology company, which is cool. And I think it’s good for patients good for Medtronic good all around?

 

Stacey Simms  17:01

Well, it’s interesting, because for years, people were saying, you know, this stuff’s got to look better, you live with it, it’s on your body, you want it to look less like a medical device. And there was a lot of pushback from people within the community, as well as on the technical side, who were saying who cares, just make it work better. And I think we are at a place now at a point now where there is enough, even though there seems to be fewer pump companies, there’s enough competition, that they do have to look good, they do have to feel better. I mean, I don’t remember what you used when you were first diagnosed, but it’s changed a lot in the Gosh, in the almost 14 years I’ve been he’s been using an insulin pump, it’s not a brick anymore.

 

Rob Howe 17:35

Right, it doesn’t have a Gameboy screen, it doesn’t look like a calculator, you know, I think all that really comes down to me is just user experience in general. And you look at iPhone, for example, and the transformative qualities that that piece of technology has had on society in general. And I think that that is sort of the the gold standard now and that filters down to healthcare companies, something that we talked about in my agency world is that, you know, most people, when they think of competition, they think of, you know, immediately in their industry, their top two or three competitors. for consumers, they don’t look at it necessarily that way, they’re looking at you online as your competition is Apple, and Chase, and Amazon. And if your online experience, if your device experience doesn’t mirror those, and isn’t on par with those companies, which is really unfair for a lot of businesses, a lot of brands, because they’re they don’t have the ability that or the scale or the infrastructure to deploy at that level. But if you’re not on par with those companies, users will tune out, they’re looking for best in class. So I think that’s been a big shift for all the major diabetes technology companies, and I think outside of diabetes as well.

 

Stacey Simms  18:40

Alright, let’s move on just one of those other issues, you and I saw a conversation online that we wanted to talk about, I think this was mostly on Twitter, where the word disabled or disability, it’s interesting when using that with diabetes, because Ben, he was diagnosed before he was two. And all I heard for this first few years was he can do anything, it’s not going to stop him. But then you get to school. And it’s like, he needs a 504 plan because he has a disability. And he’s covered. I have my own take on it. And I’m curious what you think is the person who lives with diabetes? Is that a bad word for you?

 

Rob Howe 19:11

You know, that’s really interesting. I seen that conversation. I think I want first of all people to know that I see both sides. I think I see people who argue on one side or the other. I you are seeing and I think for me, it’s very similar to your story of Benny, you know, I was told from the get go from the jump that whatever dreams you have for your life are still within reach. I have perpetuated that idea at the beginning of all of my talks, all of my messaging, I believe I’m living proof that you can do things with diabetes if you want to and take care of yourself. I mean, there’s other factors involved, obviously, but at the same time, I think denying the fact that you’re disabled denies all the hard work that you put into your life to stay alive every day. And let’s be honest, I think none of us would put the amount of work mental, physical, financial into anything else that we put into diabetes without compensation, expected compensation or some sort of like just reward you know, and I think that’s really where it nails home for me is like if you factually like scientifically, under the Americans with Disabilities Act or the ADA, people with diabetes have a disability. That doesn’t mean that you can’t do the things that you want to do. But it also doesn’t mean that you’re not disabled. And what really reinforced this for me was a few months ago, there is a documentary on Netflix called Pistorius, which is about Oscar Pistorius, the Olympian who was born with defects in his legs, and he runs on the Nike blades, the legs that that allow disabled runners to run. And he competed not only in the in the Paralympic Games, but also against non disabled athletes. But in this documentary, and obviously, tragically, he murdered his girlfriend, killed his girlfriend, and you know, is on permanent house arrest, I believe it was so interesting to see the rhetoric by which he referred to his situation, his disability, and he’s like, I don’t identify as disabled. And that was something that I think, in the early years of my life with diabetes, when I was a younger man, less gray hair. But I identified with that I was like, I don’t want people to treat me differently, I want to show them that I can do this. But when you deny that disability, again, when you when you close yourself off from things like diabetes community, when you close yourself off from benefits, like your 504, when you close yourself off to identifying as disabled or taking advantage, God forbid, you don’t take advantage of the concessions that have been granted to you because of the struggle and the burden that you’re carrying because of this disease. You know, I think you close yourself off to all the work that you’re doing. And that’s really where I want people to know that like, hey, yeah, I at face value, am a fit, athletics, successful, quote, unquote, successful person with diabetes, but I very much identify with Own your disability, that doesn’t make you and I think there’s a lot of conversations about ableism that I think we as a culture need to do better about because I think you alienate people who are disabled by saying, Well, I’m not I don’t identify as disabled or I have a disability, but I’m not disabled, I think those are our negative, you know, negatively affect people who you know, really identify as disabled. So I want to say like, I Rob, how professional athlete, you know, the guy who goes and speaks and it’s like, you can do whatever you want, I identify as disabled, I am disabled, I have a disability, that doesn’t mean that I’m not going to wake up tomorrow. And if my blood sugar’s high, I’m just going to quit and be like, you know, what, sign our team, but it What it does mean is that I see you out there struggling, the burden of diabetes is taxing, I feel you, I see you. And I think it’s better for all of us to just work harder on accepting the fact that with diabetes, you have a disability that allows you some advantages, and allows you access to some things that people without this disability don’t have access to. And to deny yourself that is, I think, a disservice to yourself.

 

Stacey Simms  22:57

It’s such an interesting topic, because you really centered on what bothers me the most about it. And that is that as a society, we look down on disabled people in our language and our actions, it’s just baked in. And it’s come out so much better in the last few years that we’re even able to talk about it. You know, even in the elections, I never thought about that. You know how we don’t help. We don’t even make it equal access for people with disabilities. And so there’s this whole society burden of not wanting to admit that we have anything wrong with us, because then we’re stigmatized, it doesn’t even it’s not even just diabetes. But I also think that, you know, trying to raise a child with type one, many would never say, I don’t think he would say even today, and you know, it’s not it’s his voice is not mine to speak for, I don’t think he would say I have a disability, I don’t think he would raise his hand like you were doing. But I do think that he should, because all of the fights that have gone before, you know, it’s easy, or it’s easy, it’s never easy, but it’s easier to be a elementary school kid or a middle school kid. Now with a pump or a CGM. And with all the education and with a 504, than it would have been in the 70s, or the 80s, when a kid was doing shots and couldn’t leave to go to the bathroom, and we’ve heard all these horrible stories or an employee back then it wasn’t protected. And I will say he’s had an easier because he has a lot of access and a lot of privilege, you know, these words that we throw around, but he really does. He’s got me as his mother with a big mouth and a microphone. But also, you know, I guess I’m trying to say is all that work that went into protecting people with disabilities, as you said, it’s really important to honor now, and to understand that if you’re a cashier, and this happened in North Carolina, and in other states, leave your cashier at the Piggly Wiggly, and you need to treat your blood sugar with juice, and they won’t let you you’re covered. You’re not gonna lose your job, we’re gonna get paid back. And that’s the kind of coverage that I think we need to think more about. But I will tell you a funny story about how I didn’t help me and I stand by this when we went to we’ve gone to Disney World many times never been to Disneyland. We live on the East Coast but we’ve been to Disney World many times. We’ve never used the disability pass or the guest assistance. Pass or whatever they call it. The reason is, because when we first started talking about it, it was presented to us like a reward. It was like, Oh, you have diabetes, you have this great thing, and you can cut all the lines. And it wasn’t presented to me as, hey, Benny might have a low blood sugar or might have a high low blood sugar, you know, high situation, you might need it. And I said to myself, I’m a crazy Disney planner, like, I am good to go. We don’t wait in lines, whenever because I plan it. I’m, I love it. So we never did it. And I’ve talked about this, I was called out on it at a conference, once we’re just having a casual conversation, and somebody in their 20s said to me, you know, you’re doing him a disservice, because you’re teaching him that he shouldn’t take advantage of what’s out there. And I said, Well, he shouldn’t because it’s not a reward. And she said, it’s not a reward. It’s not like a golden ticket, it’s there if he needs it. And if you don’t need it, fine. But if he needs it, when he goes, he shouldn’t feel bad about using it. And she reframed the whole thing for me, and we still haven’t had to use it. But I have definitely been less judgmental, and Kinder about other parents that I know who have used it. So if you’re somebody that I’ve, I’ve been snarky too. I apologize. That’s what I think

 

Rob Howe 26:05

that speaks to your capacity to learn, Stacy, I mean, you know, we all this would be shocking, probably not to no one. But we don’t always make the right decision. You know, and we learn new information. And we reframe conversations. And, you know, I’ll piggyback on that I, when I was younger, I was traveling a lot for basketball. And I like to get on the plane early, because I was like, Oh, I’m flying Southwest, I’m in the the B section, I’m not going to get a great seat. But since I have diabetes, that’s, that’s all good, I can go get whatever seat that I want. And then I stopped doing that. And I did that bait for a couple of reasons. I think consciously, I would see people who needed real assistance to board the plane early. And I wanted to be respectful of their space. And whether it’s wheeled wheelchair access, or, you know, just extra medical supplies, I find that the you know, like the the accommodation that is made on airlines for people with diabetes is mostly to make sure they can get their medical supplies nearby on with them. And I, for the most part, my supplies, because I’m a dude probably are always a smaller footprint than some of my lady counterparts. And also, maybe I’m just a little bit more of a free spirit and be like, Hey, you know what I’m going to take, I’m going to be out of town for a week, I’m going to take two or three infusion sets and a couple of miles Insulet in my backpack, and we’re going to go for it. So it was always close by to me anyway, and all that to say I don’t do it today. But I know it’s an option. And if I feel like the flight is oversold, or I’m gonna have to make a quick connection, and I want to make sure that my medicine is within reach, I will take advantage of it because I know it’s there. And I think having that knowledge and being willing to accept that assistance except those accommodations. And and knowing that that space is available for you is positive. Yeah,

 

Stacey Simms  27:51

I mean, for me, as I have learned and changed my mind, and I probably will continue to my philosophy is now if you need it, or think you might take it, it’s there to help you if you think it’s going to you know it be if there’s someone else’s more need. If you know you don’t need something, right. It’s like parking in a handicapped spot. When you really don’t need it, you’re driving your grandmother’s card, it’s got the ticket on it, and you’re just like I’m in a hurry. Don’t do that. Right. But you know, but if you need it, use it. And don’t be embarrassed or ashamed. And I hope all of you don’t even know how to if I’m even saying this the right way.

 

Rob Howe 28:27

I think there is there is shame wrongfully pointed out, people who look. And I think that’s back to that sort of ableism narrative perpetuated in this country. You mentioned like the election. I’ll give you another example. Governor Greg Abbott in Texas is in a wheelchair. He had a there was an accident when he was a child, and it caused him to be paralyzed from the waist down. So while I don’t agree with a lot of the things that he does, politically, I stay away. And there’s been a very big movement online of people who disagree with him, staying away from the low hanging fruit of making fun of his wheelchair, and his disability, because that’s not what makes him make poor decisions. from a policy standpoint. That’s just the easiest, most that’s just like a kid, when you’re young kids pointed the first different thing that they can see. And oftentimes, that’s very hurtful. But we are adults. And we can see that, you know, that that’s unproductive. And I think, again, coming back to not not alienating anyone who has a disability. It’s it’s more focusing on policy and actual, you know, politics in the case of Governor Abbott that are detrimental to what’s going on here, not his disability, I think his disability is completely off of the ballot.

 

Stacey Simms  29:37

Yeah, it should be it really should be in the diabetes, so much of what you all deal with is invisible, or, you know, you’re able to make it invisible. So it’s even harder in some ways. So I don’t know. And I

 

Rob Howe 29:48

mean, I think even even on that point, there seemingly is a stigma to, you know, letting your diabetes be shown. And I think there’s a lot of people who share they’re now very proud of their cgms they’re proud of their pumps. To wear them out. They’re proud of sharing their numbers on social media. I you know, I get a lot of laughs from people sharing your 69 blood sugar’s with me and, you know, I think that that sort of empowerment and saying hey I can I can be publicly facing with this and there’s a community with that is great because, you know, look at me I’m like the poster child for some of the negative achievement culture things around diabetes I am you know, handsome white guy who used to have a six pack and you know, got to play sports and live his best life. And you know, he’s not held down by his diabetes and what you don’t see our bloody sights. And you know, all of the adhesive that you got to wipe off your arm after you change the site, or, you know, the feeling of less than after you’re at a pool party pre COVID, and your site got too wet and you got pulled out really easily and you have to go home, you know, or just waking up on a vacation with a high blood sugar and it ruined your day. Like, those things don’t always get shown. And I need to be better about sharing some of those low moments personally, on our platforms. But you know, just because you’re not you don’t look like a Olympic endurance champion with, you know, hollywood abs and a great tan and you know, living in your best life always time in range at 100%. If that doesn’t sound like you, that’s super okay. And I see you and that doesn’t mean that your life with diabetes is less than I think there’s there’s downsides. And I and I’ve benefited a lot from achievement, culture and diabetes, but my love, I’m an I’m an achiever, that’s what I try it. That’s, that’s sort of wired into me. And, you know, as I get older, I learn more about myself and why I do things. And I love following the rules. I love having a structure so I can try to achieve that’s just what speaks to me.

 

Stacey Simms  31:40

Wait, I need to ask you though. Okay. I love everything. You’ve said, achievement culture, though. I’m not up on that as the world’s worst diabetes. Mom. I mean, I’m kidding. But you know, I’m all about mistakes. And that’s been my platform. And I mean, my brand, I have to call it that. But that’s truly how I parent and I’ve never gone for more I’m what does it cheapen culture mean? Is that that you can do anything? Or I’m only showing the beautiful stuff? or What

 

Rob Howe 32:04

does that mean? I think that’s part of it. I’ll reinforce something that I’m sure will speak to you, in a way think about podcast guests. What’s more interesting to someone who like at face value, we have two people, we’ve got a mom with three kids who gets her kids to school on time, leaves with diabetes, and you know, is just juggling a regular life. Or we have you know, two time Olympian bobsledder who, you know, has been around the world 50 times and you know, has been on the ESPN body issue or whatever the case, right? So at face value as a journalist, who are you going to pick for the more juicy story? Yeah, the bobsled guy, the guy, the boss like guy. And I don’t know, any type ones that bobsled. So I think it’s a good sport, because I’m not singling anybody out in particular. But I think as a diabetes community, I have also been guilty of like, Oh, I’m in this position where I can go speak or I can have, you know, people follow me and they follow the podcast, and I get these opportunities to represent people with diabetes. So I got into this sort of negative pattern of thinking where I was like, What do I have to do next? Like, what is my, I’ve already given my podcast, talk to all these jdrf chapters? Well, they’re not going to invite me back next year to give the same talk, I’ve got to do something else that achieve something else. So like, right now, even the talk that I give is called from professional basketball player to professional diabetic. And inherently in that title, while it is good, and people click on it is ableism. And it’s like, oh, you’re only worth speaking at these events. If you achieve something crazy, like proven playing pro sports. And I think I’m really trying to be more aware and more, not cautious is the wrong word. But just more mindful of the things that I say and the things that I do that are rooted in an achievement culture that rewards extraordinary feats, and also tends to erase living a normal life and making that unsuccessful.

 

Stacey Simms  33:56

I’m going to arm chair psychologize on why it didn’t resonate with me, moms aren’t allowed to have achievement culture, we are not allowed. And I’m using that term very loosely, because Screw it, I’ll do whatever I want. You won’t allow me. But truly, if my brand was the best diabetes, Mom, I got it right. And you don’t or professional mom, right? You’re not going to see anybody talking about that, because we don’t talk about moms that way. And I think that’s, I know, this isn’t about me, I’m glad to have you on as a guest. But I couldn’t help but share that because of what you said, I was thinking to myself, How on earth would I achieve something like that? Or what can i and it’s really interesting to think about it in those terms. And I think a lot of diabetes moms, what resonates with us is you know, oh, I’m the worst I made a mistake. I’m failing my kid, I got a report card. You know, it’s all this negative talk. And that’s a problem in and of itself. And you got other things to work on. You got to worry about. I’m succeeding. I’m great. You want to bring me to talk because I’m doing so well. It’s so fascinating how we can do this.

 

Rob Howe 35:00

You know, and I think too, you know, speaking to diabetes moms, which I love, and I think that’s a demographic of people, I never thought I would get to meet as intimately as I have. And, you know, I think people like me, and people who achieve are great to show to kids, you know, because hey, look at look at Rob, he’s living his best life. He has a podcast, he talks about diabetes, he’s not embarrassed. And I live for those moments where I can be the person that I needed when I was 16 years old, and have somebody who’s accessible and wants to give back and wants to have those hard conversations and can say, you know what, I do see you man, like, you know, your 16 year mom doesn’t know what’s going on. You don’t want to talk to her. And somehow I managed to remain young looking enough that I can communicate with somebody, hopefully,

 

Stacey Simms  35:43

you when you talk, you’re like with Newsela What are you like, 30?

 

Rob Howe 35:46

I’d like 32. So yeah, I mean, I see. But you know, Stacy, you’re not on tik tok. Right, you know, you know, if you put me on Tick tock, I’d be so canceled. I can’t dance. You know, I mean, so I think for me, I just want to try to remain like as tuned into what people with diabetes are going through, that they may not even be aware of. And I think this is in this sort of chronic, all the chronic things that we’re juggling, I think chronic focus on achievement, within, you know, some of the diabetes online community cultures is important for us to call out and I think I’ve benefited from it. And it’s important for me, it’s important to me, that I make sure to bring people in, who maybe haven’t benefited from it and use that to highlight important stories, because you know, what’s crazy, and surprised me back to the podcast example, when I first started, and I was really, really digging into what episodes are resonating with people, the one that was far and away the most resonant of my first like 15 episodes, was really the most simple basic, it was a story of a type one mom and how she prepared for her first and second pregnancies with T one D. And, you know, for me at the time, like a 27 year old jock tech bro. I was like, you know, it was a great conversation. And my my friend, Lindsay, who’s my friend in real life, did an amazing job. But I never would have guessed that that would be the one that would have taken off of the first group. And it wasn’t necessarily the achievers. It’s the people who achieve in spite of there being no big reward publicly.

 

Stacey Simms  37:15

Yeah, well, I think we need and I know you’ll agree with this, we need everybody in this community, right? We need the people who go up Mount Everest meet the people sitting at the desk job. But what has resonated with my listeners is anybody they can learn from. And I think it’s interesting. And especially at first you want those high, high achieving successful people, those Olympians, and those rock stars, because as a parent of a kid, you can look at this person and say, Okay, this person was type one is super successful. So my kid probably has a pretty good chance of being a mid level executive, you know, at Staples, or whatever, right? They’re going to be okay, or IBM, I shouldn’t, whenever IBM even exists anymore, I’ll show my age. But, you know, we do need those other people who have shown us how it’s done something as complicated as a pregnancy with type one to something as simple as, it’s not really that simple. But how did you transition from elementary school to middle school with your kid, right? Those are the things that we all want to learn. And I think what’s really cool about social media, and somebody like you who’s you know, super big on Instagram, and all that stuff, is you get to show, as you said, the cool looking stuff, but you know, it looks great, it looks perfect, but then it’s also a chance to show all those crummy site changes. And those days when you don’t feel good. And you don’t have to polish it all up. I mean, you just snap a picture or talk about an Instagram. And you do that all the time. I think it’s great.

 

Rob Howe 38:29

Yeah, it’s new. You know, I think maybe I’ve even mentioned it before in this pod. But in 2018, at ADA, I found this poster board study in the in the poster Hall, talking about the ANC outcomes and involvement in the diabetes online community. I mean, just that sort of osmosis of encountering people with diabetes on a regular basis, and the things that they do makes you better at diabetes, I don’t know. It’s just it’s normalizing. And I think that’s what’s so important, and what the Internet has brought. And I think even still, I’m even more learning about sort of the micro communities and diabetes, where you’re able to find people that look like you people that are interested in the things that you’re looking for. And otherwise, like, where would you find those people. And you go back to when Benny was diagnosed, you basically had the only people in your immediate area were the people that you could stay in contact with early blogs, maybe kind of just starting to sprout. And now you can just go to some of these big diabetes accounts and search for people or look on the hashtag and look at the locations and say, well, wow, there’s somebody with diabetes there. You know, I got to be a part of this really great campaign this summer with express a global brand, you know, and

 

Stacey Simms  39:34

Oh, yeah. Wait a second. Wait a second. Tell me about that. Because that wasn’t diabetes, you’re like this, like a model? I mean, right. Or model. What was that? That was amazing.

 

Rob Howe 39:42

I can I guess I can put like publish model on my resume. Now. You know, what’s cool about that campaign, and first of all, the Express team was really great to work with. They’re all pros. And I think just hearing sort of the creative outline of what they were trying to do as a person with diabetes as a person with a disability as a person with something that makes them different, was just really cool to be there representing people with diabetes. So they sent out like a cold casting call, it had a bunch of stuff, as you know, or maybe not like, I’m very interested in fashion, I love style is something that I just I don’t know why you

 

Stacey Simms  40:16

post your outfits on Instagram,

 

Rob Howe 40:19

feel free to gather fit pics are my thing. I love them. And you know, my wife and I are currently you know, just having a turf war over who needs more closet space. And I will not lose, I will not lose that, that I just don’t put it on put on record. But the cool thing about Express was they said, Hey, we’re looking for people who are on Instagram, but it’s not a requirement. We’re looking for people who have some sort of social good or community type. It’s not required. We’re looking for people who have an interest in fashion, but it’s not required. And I was like, wait a minute, I have all three of those things. Let me like really try to get this. And so it was a cold call. I put together a pretty good application and response. And then I set it and forget it. And like it was 90 days later until they got back to me. And I sort of put it out of my mind. And they said, Hey, Rob, like, we’re really excited to have you part of this campaign. Like, can you talk on this day? And I was like, wait a minute, did I book it? And they said, Yes. And so it was really cool to be able to out a big panel. I know, first of all, I was all over the world. inexpressive. I mean, it was a year of COVID, obviously, so not as many people saw me, but like on the front page of Express calm, very visible. And I was not just a model, I was representing myself, I was like Rob, like, hey, Rob is the Express model, and he lives with diabetes. And that was something I had never experienced on a mainstream level before. It’s one thing to go to these diabetes events and celebrate those all together. But to be different on a panel full of other amazing superstars, frankly, like, who have achieved way more than I have. I was there as a person with diabetes. And I got to talk about like at base level what type 1 diabetes is and talking about the insulin affordability and talking about what it’s like to have an insulin pump attached to your body at all times. And to see people be like, wow, I had no idea about any of that was just really cool to be a part of and like tan France from queer. I was the host on one with tan France. It was unbelievable.

 

Stacey Simms  42:07

Was he nice?

 

Rob Howe 42:08

Oh, yeah. Oh, how can he he’s like he was so giving. He seems like the nicest guy, an absolute Pro. And honestly, I’ve done a lot of interviews. I was admittedly not really super nervous for our conversation today. Because I know you and I figured it would be nice and easy, but I was like sweating bullets. Getting ready in my like this in this office in here for 10. France. I was like, like, What’s my name? Like? What do I do just like to make sure I don’t stumble, you know, but it was a really awesome experience. I’m so grateful to have had the opportunity. And, you know, hopefully it’s the the first of many. That’s awesome. You know,

 

Stacey Simms  42:39

I worked at Express. When I was in college, I worked at the express in the carousel center mall in Syracuse. So if you shopped there in 1991 or 92, I helped you out. Not you, Rob, you’re looking like you’re looking through the time. You were not there. It might be wondering. Well, the

 

Rob Howe 42:57

thing I was actually thinking about is my wife was born in Cheryl in New York. So he was born in 1991. So maybe her mom this call

 

Rob Howe 43:05

is over?

 

Rob Howe 43:06

Yeah. Yeah, sorry. Technical difficulties were not cut off. But yes, my wife is a is younger than I am. Which is really funny. And yeah, that’s a small world. I didn’t know that. You had the upstate New York time?

 

Stacey Simms  43:19

Oh, yes. I went to Syracuse University. And then my first job was in Utica. And then I moved back to Syracuse for my another job. And then I came to Charlotte where I am now. I was up there for 10 years in the snow.

 

Rob Howe 43:30

Oh man. very snowy. Very Yeah.

 

Stacey Simms  43:31

But I grew up. I grew up in New York, so not too far.

 

Rob Howe 43:33

People were asking me like, so do you shop at Express. And I said, You know, I haven’t shopped there recently as much. But when I was getting my first job, and I needed to get rid of my college, bro clothes and like, put on some real professional clothes I went to express so it was like cool to be like, oh, they’re like, yeah, like, that’s a big part of the consumer that we’re trying to reach. And you know, really people who have an interest in fashion, this is a first step for them. And it was it was cool to be very, I felt very seen and very, the team that express was awesome.

 

Stacey Simms  44:01

That’s terrific. Yeah, I worked there. And then I got a job at a radio station in Syracuse. And then that was the end of that. never looked back and worked weekends. Why are

 

Rob Howe 44:09

you found it you found your Yeah,

 

Stacey Simms  44:12

I knew what I wanted to do was very cool. Are you going to be working on things like that is modeling something you would like to continue to pursue or the fashion industry?

 

Rob Howe 44:20

Yeah, tell me what you’re advertising I do to being a model for Express wasn’t on my vision board for 2020. But I don’t know, it was cool. It was just just to be a part of it to, you know, be in front of camera. Like you mentioned, I work in advertising and have been parts of shoots like this, behind the camera and working on the campaign and working on the creative direction, but to be in front of the camera and kind of collaborate with people whose jobs I know intimately. And it was a very small crew because of COVID. And they came they came to Dallas and it was cool to just be able to be in a small collaborative group of people who like I was just a photographer, the director and the videographer and myself. And we just got to hang out all day and talk about ideas and be creative and Yeah, I think I would love to do that again.

 

Stacey Simms  45:01

Nice. You know, we’ve been talking for a long time, I didn’t even ask you or congratulate you on your wedding, which happened this year. Yeah. So congratulations on that. That’s Thank you big, big,

 

Rob Howe 45:10

wiseguy big fan of my wife.

 

Stacey Simms  45:13

Good to hear good to hear what’s up with you all in 2021. I mean, you’re moving ahead with Medtronic. Moving on with the ad agency, you are married, man. I mean, 2020 was a difficult year, let’s admit that. But any anything on top, I think I’m almost afraid to plan for 2021 in a way,

 

Rob Howe 45:29

me too. I I don’t want to get too far ahead of my skis, you know, I think we are still a ways away of putting COVID completely behind us. And I also want to be very present in like, how What a tragedy it is. And I think even personally, within my friend group, there’s been some very recent developments that are just awful. So I think we need time to heal. And I think we need time to, you know, mourn sort of our old selves, you know, like it or not one way or the other, we’re all different because of 2020. And hopefully, we can build sort of on the ashes of everything and be better to each other longer term. We got some cool projects. I think this this question came from Peter from the, from the Instagram story that I posted the other day. And, you know, we’re I have a cool series that I’m working on called more than a diabetic, which is going to be debuting next year with some awesome community members. So that’s up first. You know, in terms of brand partnerships, obviously, Medtronic has a couple other long term partners that I’ve had that I want to do some deeper, cooler campaigns with, I’m sort of in a, I don’t need new stuff I really want to care for and sort of nurture my existing relationships. And my existing, I don’t know whether partnerships are you know, I have my a lot of irons in the fire, I don’t need more irons, I need to just really focus on you know, my relationship with my wife, my relationship, my family, my my two businesses, and really focusing on being a good steward of what we have and continuing to do, right for people with diabetes. That sounds like a great plan. I want to have some fun, you know?

 

Stacey Simms  46:55

Yeah, definitely. And hopefully, we can see each other again and travel a little bit towards the end of the year. And I would just love that. That would be wonderful for me.

 

Rob Howe 47:03

Yeah. If I want to manifest anything for 2021, I put my hands in the air because I’m manifesting this my manifesting. Okay, if you’re listening, you’re missing out. I want to go on a honeymoon with my wife in 20. Oh, love that. That would be a fun thing. Travel, you got my wheels turning, I love to travel. And I have missed that sort of being held down at the house this year. So Excellent. Well,

 

Stacey Simms  47:22

I hope we can do that. I’ll keep you posted on anything I can help with. Thank you so much for spending some time with me, Rob, it’s always fun to catch up. And you caught me, you know, me talking more than I usually do on these interviews, I think but thank you.

 

Rob Howe 47:33

I like that. I think it’s just the my inner interviewer. And, you know, thank you for all the work that you put in Diabetes Connections. I think when you’re a diabetes mom, there’s so much work that goes into that anyway, and I just applaud people like you. And then frankly, there aren’t that many like you at this point. You’ve been doing this a long time and do a great job. So I hold you in high regard. I’ll just leave it at that you do a great job and I appreciate you.

 

Stacey Simms  47:55

Well, that’s very good. Thanks, Rob.

 

Announcer 48:02

You’re listening to Diabetes Connections with Stacey Simms.

 

Stacey Simms  48:08

I’ll link up lots more information about the topics we spoke about, especially the Medtronic pump if you’d like more information on that, and you can go back just a couple of episodes. We had the folks Medtronic on in the fall of 2020. To go through all of the details. I’ll link that up in this episode as well.

And I’ll put a link into Rob’s Instagram where you can see everything we talked about. He is quite prolific on Instagram and his wonderful wedding photos, the modeling, even the Medtronic signing announcement that I kind of teased him about there. It was great to talk to him and I hope it was okay that I talked so much. It was odd to be on the other side of the microphone, but it was fun to hopefully you enjoyed it as well.

We are going to have my favorite segment of the week coming up Tell me something good. But first Diabetes Connections is brought to you by Dexcom. It is so hard to believe with Benny 16 years old now, almost six feet tall that he was ever a toddler. And I mean it was also just like it was yesterday. It’s bananas. When you have a toddler diagnosed with type one. You do hear rumblings for a long time about the teen years people start scaring you about that right away. But when it hit us at full force a little early, I was really glad we had Dexcom Benny’s insulin needs started going way up around age 11 and along with the hormone swings all the growth, I cannot imagine managing diabetes without the dexcom continuous glucose monitoring system. We can react more quickly to highs and lows. see trends adjust insulin doses with advice from our endocrinologist. I know using the Dexcom g six has helped improve Benny’s agency and his overall health. If your glucose alerts and readings for the G six do not match symptoms or expectations, use a blood glucose meter to make diabetes treatment decisions. To learn more Just go to Diabetes connections.com and click on the Dexcom logo.

 

I got a bunch of Tell me something good submissions this week. So if you are not featured and you popped one into the Facebook group. Please stay tuned I will be sharing them in the weeks to come. Corinna posted a great article from Washington and New laws taking effect this year from Washington State caps the cost of insulin at $100 per month health plans issued or renewed after January 1 2021. Must cap Insulet co pays deductibles and other forms of cost sharing at $100 per 30 day supply. I’ll link up that article and I do think we’re gonna see more and more legislative action this year and next year when it comes to insulin so Corinna thanks for sharing that

and Corinna’s blog also got an honor. Recently, she writes type two musings, and she was featured in an article on everyday health about the top type two diabetes blogs to watch this year. So I’ll link that up as well if you haven’t checked her out. She’s a longtime advocate and blogger in the diabetes community. Thanks for sharing that.

And just a little good news from Carol Who says I discovered the secret to five sites use six millimeter cannula instead of nine millimeter, whatever works. The thigh site is one that Benny has struggled with. He just does not like it. He’s done it here and there over the years. And you know, it’s just not his favorite. So Carol, I’m really glad that that worked. You know, we used a longer canula for a while and if you’re not familiar for not a pumper. So the canula is how the pump gets the insulin infuses the insulin under the skin, you have usually an inserter of some kind, it puts a needle under the skin immediately withdraws and leaves a tiny canula six millimeter or nine millimeter under the skin where the insulin drips through when Benny was 10 or 11. And we kind of noticed his insulin use going way up. We didn’t really think about the cannulas and the insets being overwhelmed. We thought well, maybe we just need to use a longer inset maybe it’s a problem with scar tissue. And we switched to the nine millimeter for a couple of months. It made zero difference for him. It was one of the things that led us to untethered, which if you’re new to the show, we used a combination of long acting and pumping for two years when Benny’s insulin needs went way, way, way up. And it took a lot of the strain off the inset. It helped him measurably it was just wonderful. His insulin needs have gone down. He is 16. He is coming out of puberty. And so we are off untethered. But I didn’t mean to be under there, Carol. Sorry. Thank you so much for sending that in.

And I’ll add something good in that Benny has started back with wrestling practice. Now this season is going to nothing like any season in the past. I’m not sure they’ll ever even actually wrestle for the rest of this school year. But we’re back practicing. They are either indoors with masks, I think when they’re outdoors, they’re wearing masks depending on where they are and how close they are together. But he is really psyched to be back with the wrestling team and working hard. And he’s really been working hard all this year. And I’m really proud of him. I don’t like to say too much. I’m very superstitious. I’m knocking on wood even as I’m talking, which is why I don’t brag about him more. But isn’t that ridiculous, but I am superstitious, but he is doing well. And it’s cool to have the wrestling practices back again. So that’s my Tell me something good. Please feel free to email me with your good news or post in the Facebook group when I ask and just tell me something good.

 

One of the conversations we had in the Facebook group recently was about predictions for the new year. And I meant to give mine during the last episode, I want to put this on tape so you can laugh at me. We can play it back next year and see if I cut anything right. So here were my predictions. And this was about diabetes technology. I’ll go big. I think we’re gonna get Tandem bolus by phone approved that has been submitted according to investor calls, I think we’re gonna get that approved and rolled out by third quarter of 2021. I think we’re gonna get Dexcom g7 approval and rolled out by the third quarter of 2021 as well, that one I don’t think has been submitted yet. So that one might be a little bit more hopeful. But come on. I do also think no direct to watch. Sorry, for g7 I still think you’d have to use a phone. But I do predict that the DIY crowd will find a way to crack it. And you’ll be able to go direct from the g7 transmitter to a watch. That’s very, very helpful. And it’s also set up with zero knowledge about what it would take to do something like that. Love you guys. I have no idea. I think you’re all geniuses. I think we’re gonna get Omni pod five powered by horizon. Not until the fourth quarter. I think they’re just a little bit behind only because I mean COVID delayed everything and my understanding is that have not submitted yet. Omni pod folks, you are more than welcome to come on the show. I’d love to get an update about that. Let me know. And I do think we’ll also see another viable CGM competitor ready for submission to US FDA by the end of the year by the end of 2020. I think it will be submitted.

 

So those are my technology predictions. I think, as I’ve said, really, in this episode in many in the past, I think this is going to be a big year for conversation and education about insulin pricing, not just because the democrats are in charge in DC because let’s face it, they didn’t do anything last time around about insulin pricing, but I am very encouraged by the education and the advocacy. Frankly, the impatience among many people I’m seeing now, I think it is going to be different than last time around. Look, don’t misunderstand my comment. Nobody said anything about insulin pricing for 30 years under any administration, it has nothing to do with party. It hasn’t so far, maybe we’ll see federal action. But I do think that the state legislators are going to make the big difference here. I refuse to make any personal predictions. I’m hoping that I continue to let Benny become more independent. I hope that he continues to put up with my digital list. Are you okay? Do you need to think Can I help you for at least a little while longer. He’s a sophomore in high school. So I’ve got him here for a couple of more years.

And I predict that the podcast will stay a place for me to serve you. It is really a privilege to do this. I hope we continue to grow at the pace we are I love reaching more people. But bottom line, this is still the most rewarding project of my professional career. I’ve been in broadcasting a very long time, longer than I’d like to admit sometimes. And this is it. For me. This is the big deal and the one that has made just an enormous difference for me personally. So thanks for that. Got any predictions? We already have a thread going in Diabetes Connections the group I’ll bump it up when this conversation goes live. Thank you, as always to my editor John Bukenas from audio editing solutions. And thank you so much for listening. I’m Stacey Simms. I’ll see you back here next week.

 

Benny  56:25

Diabetes Connections is a production of Stacey Simms Media. All rights reserved. All wrongs avenged

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