Imagine if eighty five percent of people diagnosed with diabetes in the US did not live past the first year.
If you lived as little as 710 miles away from where you live now, that could be a reality for you and your loved ones. 710 miles is the difference between living or dying with diabetes. 710 miles is the distance from Miami to Port au Prince.
I traveled to Haiti for the first time six weeks after the earthquake in 2010. At the clinic that I visited, this was the collection of diabetes supplies for their patients.
Do you see the vial of insulin and the canister of test strips in the lower left corner of the picture. That’s it.
When I returned in 2011, I asked if the clinic had ever seen anyone with Type 1 diabetes. They had not. There is a simple and devastating reason why – they are not living long enough.
During the Medtronic Diabetes Advocates Forum, Dr. Francine Kaufman described the recent advocacy work that she had completed in Haiti.
It blew my mind to hear someone who has combined two of my greatest passions – diabetes advocacy and improving lives in Haiti.
I know this video is long. Please watch it anyway.
As Dr. Kaufman states, Life for a Child is keeping children with diabetes alive around the world.
If you just read the sentence above, you can’t ever say you didn’t know. You can’t say that you didn’t know that people around the world are dying because of lack of access to the basic tools of diabetes management – insulin and test strips.
The question is – what are WE going to do about it?
I posted this on Faith Friday because my faith motivates my advocacy efforts. What motivates your advocacy?
Medtronic Diabetes Advocates Forum Disclosure: Medtronic paid for transportation, meals and my hotel room during the forum. Any activities outside of the forum (such as taking my friends to the Santa Monica Pier) were my expense alone. I was not paid to attend or write about the forum.
You can read more about my disclosure policy here.