On Monday, July 13th, Sweet Siblings attended the JDRF Children's Congress in Washington DC. Programming began with a delegate social, a room filled with beeping diabetics from across the country along with their parents. The following day, a panel was formed by diabetic role models who presented to the delegates about their experiences as diabetic football players, actors, musicians, and more. Tuesday afternoon was spent preparing for the lobbying sessions that would occur on Wednesday morning. Delegates and their parents were briefed on what they were supposed to discuss with the members of Congress. One of the main focuses of all delegates was to rally support for the Medicare CGM Access Act, which ensures that continuous glucose monitors and the future artificial pancreas are covered by Medicare and therefore private insurance, which usually takes cues from public healthcare. Prior to attending the conference, Mathias created a scrapbook about his diabetes that he used in his conversation with the congressmen and women. As New York natives, Sweet Siblings lobbied in Representative Carolyn Malony's office, Senator Kristen Gillibrand's office, and with Senator Chuck Schumer himself.
After lobbying, we attended a senate hearing where diabetics from all walks of life presented evidence about how important the CGM was in their everyday lives. Overall, the conference was a huge success where we were able to meet interesting diabetics from all over the United States as well as represent the needs of the Type 1 diabetes community in Congress.