Back to Activities Bethesda 2008 Conference

Children with Diabetes: Focus on Technology

A Regional Conference and Expo
September 26-28, 2008
Marriott Bethesda North, Bethesda, Maryland

This Conference is Sold Out

CWD teens like Kara embrace the latest in diabetes technology, like the OmniPod

Kenny uses a DexCom sensor ...

... and Monica uses a FreeStyle Navigator

Meet with pump company representatives to learn about the latest products

CWD kids proudly wear their insulin pumps on their belt and some wear their infusion sets in their arm

Elementary kids learn about the latest technology while having fun on the Scavenger Hunt

Why Focus on Technology?

Try an Insulin Pump

Come to the conference and try a pump! Several pump companies -- Animas, Disetronic, Medtronic MiniMed, and Smiths Medical -- will be offering this great opportunity for potential would-be pumpers to try a pump using saline. Anyone interested in wearing a pump (with saline) may do so Friday, Saturday, or Sunday at the conference. A prescription from your physician is required and must include the wording "insulin pump trial with saline."

This opportunity is by appointment only. Appointments will fill up quickly. For more information and to schedule an appointment with a specific pump company, contact the following individuals:

Val Valentino at 1-877-YES PUMP, extension 1225 or via e-mail at

Disetronic Medical Systems Inc/Roche Diagnostics
Terri Richert at 317-521-0152 or

Medtronic MiniMed
Julie Sweidan at 1-800-999-9859 x 4514 or via e-mail at

Smiths Medical:
Marcela Naranjo at 651-628-7374 or

Try a Continuous
Glucose Sensor

Medtronic Invites you to Evaluate their Insulin Pump and/or Continuous Glucose Monitoring System

We are pleased to announce that Medtronic is inviting you to wear an insulin pump and continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) system during the CWD meeting. After wearing the CGM device, individuals will receive a personalized CareLinkTM report showing the effect of daily activities on their glucose levels. There are no age limits to wearing an insulin pump, but you must be at least 7 years or older to wear the CGM device.

Note: Individuals wearing the CGM device will be required to bring their own blood glucose meter and test strips for calibration of the CGM device.

If you would like to wear the insulin pump integrated with continuous glucose monitoring, a prescription from your physician is required and must include the wording, "insulin pump with saline and continuous glucose monitoring evaluation".

If you would like to wear only the continuous glucose monitoring device, a prescription from your physician is required and must include the wording "continuous glucose monitoring evaluation."

To schedule a Medtronic CGM or pump/CGM trial contact Julie Sweidan at 1-800-999-9859 x4514 or

Diabetes technology changes in the blink of an eye. Every day it seems there is something new to read and learn about. How can one possibly stay on top of the information? And how can a parent decide what new technology is important enough to add to an already tried and true diabetes management regimen? What technology should a newly-diagnosed person consider? How will the new insulin pumps and continuous glucose sensors work?

We hope that the Focus on Technology conference will help you and your family gain a better understanding of the technology currently available to people with type 1 diabetes, as well as technology which may be coming shortly down the road. We also hope to motivate you to try an insulin pump or consider a sensor if you never have!

Some very exciting faculty will be joining us! Pediatric endocrinologist Henry Anhalt will open the conference with an exploration of "Pumps and Sensors: Why Do We Use Them?" Gary Scheiner, author of Think Like A Pancreas, will cover two areas of great concern to people with type 1 diabetes: Using Technology to Strike the Spike (Managing Post-Prandial Highs) and Using Advanced Pump Features.

Pediatric endocrinologist and researcher Bill Tamborlane will present Sunday's Keynote session "The Artificial Pancreas," while Jeff Hitchcock will present a breakout on Saturday for those who are newly-diagnosed, "Technology 101."

Have you or your child thought about getting an insulin pump or a continuous sensor, but you are nervous about 'being attached to something every day, all day?' You're not alone. Are you afraid a younger child might play with the pump buttons or mistakenly bolus in the middle of the night? Afraid an infusion set or sensor probe will hurt or will fall out? These are all things that we all think about at first. A panel of CWD teens and college students who wear pumps and sensors will share their thoughts with you and answer your questions.

Confused by all the infusion sets on the market? And how do you know which one will work best for your child or yourself? How does a person wear both a sensor and an infusion set? Diabetes Educator Natalie Bellini can help you figure this out in a fun and hands-on session. Also, the pump companies will have their infusion sets available for you to look at and ask questions about during the conference in the exhibit area -- it's a great opportunity to compare, gather information, and decide what is best for you!

What about the athlete who wears a pump or sensor? Is it ok to wear an insulin pump and sensor when you are participating in an active sport like hockey, football, or basketball? How can a pump and sensor help improve your performance as an athlete? Athletic trainer and pumper Rick Philbin will discuss this, and more! Rick will also be available by appointment for individual kids and their parents to discuss specific sports-related challenges with diabetes management.

Feeling stressed out by all the technology or simply by 'life with diabetes' in general? Join psychologist Richard Rubin for a discussion about Technology Overwhelmus (on Saturday); and join cardiologist Bob Bulgarelli for a discussion about Stress Management on Sunday. Both speakers are veteran CWD-presenters.

CWD dietitian Tricia Stewart will examine various pumps and their capabilities to manage carb-counting on a daily basis. This can be an extremely useful tool for people of any age in successful diabetes management.

Finally, ADA's Crystal Jackson will talk with parents about how to make diabetes technology management in school a positive and healthy experience for kids, families, and the school professionals. It may seem like an easy thing to accomplish, but there are so many pieces involved with successfully using diabetes technology in a school environment, that it is really helpful to walk through the steps with Crystal. On Saturday afternoon by appointment, Crystal will work on specific problem-solving with families who are currently experiencing challenges with pumping in their school districts.

Registering for the Conference

Every conference participant needs to register for the conference. Pricing information is online under Registration. Note that pricing information is provided for families and individuals, as well as for additional adults such as grandparents who might be joining a family. Registering for the conference is a separate process from making hotel reservations - please make sure that you do both (registering for the hotel only registers you for a hotel room and registering for the conference only registers you for the conference itself).

Experts Who Can Help

CWD has invited some of the top experts in the diabetes industry to share their ideas with you. In addition to the scheduled presentations, the conference faculty will be available during meals and breaks for more personalized discussion with moms and dads. Our faculty are very approachable - don't be shy about asking questions! This is a time to discuss anything on your mind relating to diabetes management. It's a great opportunity to network, share ideas, and interact with CWD's most wonderful and caring professionals!

In addition, for kids, tweens, and teens, there will be special sessions just for you all day both Saturday and Sunday. One area in the conference center is for kids ages 6-9, one area is designated for kids ages 10-12, and a third area is designated for teens. These sessions are fun and activity based - they will not focus on 'just diabetes,' so they are fine for sisters, brothers, and friends to attend! Please note that a child must be in their specific age-group; no exceptions.

Teens will start in ice-breaker and discussion groups in the morning. It is likely that they will head off-site in the afternoon on both days. These excursions will be led by Natalie Bellini and Jim Vail, both veteran CWD faculty and staff. Some pocket money for incidentals or snacks should be provided by parents. Any teen with diabetes going off-site must have a meter, insulin, and glucose along with them! Also, parents must sign a release that it is OK for the teen to go offsite with CWD staff.

Please note that elementary and tween sessions are for all children, not just those with diabetes. Sessions will include games, a Scavenger Hunt, arts-n-crafts projects, pool time, and maybe some outdoor activities (sitting in one place all day simply is not fun). There will be some discussion about taking care of diabetes and some discussion about insulin pumps and sensors. We try to 'play it by ear' with our younger group, and follow their lead as far as what is interesting and exciting for them to do at any given time of the day. Again, our elementary faculty, led by Lauren Lanning and Michelle Rago, have experience with this age group and have worked for years with school-aged kids in CWD conferences. Similarly, the Tween leaders, Melissa Ringley and Kim Kelly, have been leading the Tween programs for CWD for years.

We will have childcare for potty trained children ages 3-5. No separate child care registration is required. Mary Babin, who coordinates childcare for all CWD conferences, will once again be in charge of the youngest crowd!

Please note that all conference participants under the age of 18 must have a parent or adult guardian with them during the entire conference (i.e., teens and children should not be dropped off to participate while parents go elsewhere). This is for health and liability reasons, and there will be no exceptions.

The Program

The program is designed to run 5 sessions simultaneously during most of the weekend. There will be two-day educational tracks for adults and parents of children with diabetes, school-age children (ages 6-9), tweens (ages 10-12), and teens (ages 13+). During some sessions, parents will have a choice of two speakers. Sessions will end on Sunday late afternoon. Participants who would like to continue to visit and interact with other CWD families are encouraged to stay over Sunday night and relax poolside or enjoy the many attractions that Seattle has to offer. Please note that all conference participants under the age of 18 must have a parent or adult guardian with them during the entire conference (i.e., teens and children should not be dropped off to participate while parents go elsewhere). This is for health and liability reasons, and there will be no exceptions.

The Conference Venue

The Marriott Bethesda North Hotel and Conference Center is located at 5701 Marinelli Rd., North Bethesda, Maryland. This property, adjacent to the White Flint Metro, offers some wonderful space to CWD participants including plenty of meeting room accommodations for all age groups, an indoor swimming pool, restaurant, and a state of the art fitness center. Single and double room rates are $129 per night plus tax. Rollaways are extra. Each room offers high speed Internet, a 2-line phone with voice mail, cable TV, and a coffee maker with complimentary coffee. As this venue has easy access to the Metro, many of the Washington, D.C. sites are just minutes away!

To make your room reservation, please call 800-228-9290 or 301-822-9200. Identify yourself as being with the Children with Diabetes conference. Reservations are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The room block will be held for CWD until September 4, 2008. Note that there is a conference registration fee per family and that reserving a room does not register you for the conference. Rates vary according to the date of registration. Please refer to the website for details.

Fun Things To Do

The Focus on Technology conference will kick-off Friday evening at 7:00 p.m. with an Exhibitor's Reception. This is a great opportunity for all conference participants (kids and teens, too) to meet each other, browse the exhibits, have some great conversation, and enjoy some yummy hors d'oeuvres. The exhibitors will all be set up right outside the main conference ballroom - very accessible for everyone! Afterwards, take the kids poolside and enjoy a fun evening (and let the kids get some energy out)!

Saturday and Sunday mornings, breakfast will be served in the conference ballroom from 7:45-8:45. Sessions will begin promptly at 8:45. Healthy snack breaks will be offered mid-morning and mid-afternoon in the exhibit area. The exhibit area will be open on Saturday from 8-noon and 1-5 p.m.

Saturday and Sunday at lunch, all conference participants will enjoy a healthy buffet. The lunch break is one hour; plenty of time to eat, share some great conversation, perhaps get a short walk and fresh air, and come back for an afternoon of exciting breakout sessions. Teens may head offsite after lunch with the teen leaders, while the kids will regroup for their afternoon activities at 1:00.

Dinner for all participants begins on Saturday night at 6:00 pm in Ballroom D. Following dinner, there will be a family-friendly DJ playing music and leading interactive games from 7-9 p.m. At 8:00 p.m., Natalie Bellini will lead a discussion group for parents of teens. The teens also have the option to head offsite with group leaders for an activity such as bowling or the movies.

Cancellation policy:
Cancellations prior to September 1, 2008 will be refunded minus a $50 processing fee. After September 1, no refunds are available.

Bethesda 2008: Focus on Pumping
Conference - Registration - Program - Youth program
Faculty - CWD Staff - Sponsors

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