Anyone else feel like keeping up with reading around the diabetes / health communities online is becoming overwhelming? Yup. And that's a good thing, because it validates that what we're all doing here is meaningful. Don't believe me? Just ask CNN's big-shot medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen, who just published a book called The Empowered Patient (nope, I haven't read it yet, but it's on my list!).
Here's what I have been reading of late:
* In a ground-breaking move this week, Roche introduced new Social Media Guidelines for its employees, and has made them available for public viewing. This is a big deal because it shows how serious pharma companies are becoming about engaging with patients online. Health social media "destinations" are where we increasingly gather and communicate these days, and have become such a major component of the health landscape that they can no longer be ignored by FDA-regulated companies (!)
* On a related note, D-blogger Scotty J's follow up on the Roche Social Media Summit (which I helped to organize and host). I love that Scott's taking it upon himself to call for feedback on next steps: what do we really want from pharma? Oh, and I'm also loving pretty much everything Scott's written lately ;)
* Also related: I've been perusing the list of topics at the new Diabetes Social Media Advocacy twitter chat site, discovered partially via D-blogger Bernard Farrell's excellent recent list of "newly found diabetes sites."
* Take a gander at "A Letter to Patients With Chronic Disease" by physician-blogger Dr. Rob. Some interesting insights on why we 'chronics' scare the heck out of doctors. "We (doctors) don't want to face things we can't fix because it shows our limits," he writes. Little do they know, we're more hopeful of empathy than miracles. Just show us that you care!
* On the other hand, I cannot relate at all to fiction writer Joseph Pierandozzi, who admits in The Boston Globe that he chose to keep his diabetes "My Little Secret" from the woman in his life. Honesty is the basis of any healthy relationship, no??
* All about faster insulin absorption! My buddy Bennet reports that JDRF is launching a research program to accelerate delivery of faster-acting insulin (as part of the Artificial Pancreas Project). Interesting. Meanwhile, there were also successful research results with something called the InsuPatch in a study at Yale. The patch significantly reduced the time for fast-acting insulin to peak in children and adolescents.
* Speaking of books, I was checking out D-writer Amy Mercer's plans for a new book about Women with Diabetes. I'm excited to support her efforts there.
* And then I ran across the idea for "Real Diabetic Housewives." Now that would be some really dramatic reality TV! Who would need to bother reading all this diabetic/patient drama online anymore if you could just watch it unfold live on Bravo?