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The Value of Blogging in Chronic Illness

Can blogging improve quality of life for patients with chronic pain and illness?

That’s what Kerri Sparling and Mike Lawson will explore as they discuss new ground-breaking research on the subject with the co-author of the study (Communicating the Experience of Chronic Pain and Illness through Blogging), Pamela Katz Ressler.

Can blogging improve your mental state? How does blogging and social media help patients? And most importantly, how can we encourage others to help themselves feel better by blogging? These are just some of the topics the panel will cover.

This is one you definitely won’t want to miss.

Panelists did not receive compensation from the conference sponsor. Participation by panelists does not represent an endorsement of the conference sponsor or its products.


Kerri Sparling

Kerri SparlingKerri Morrone Sparling (@sixuntilme) has been living with type 1 diabetes for over 26 years, diagnosed in 1986. She manages her diabetes and lives her life by the mantra “Diabetes doesn’t define me, but it helps explain me.”

Kerri is a passionate advocate for all-things diabetes. She is the creator and author of Six Until Me, one of the first and most widely-read diabetes patient blogs, reaching a global audience of patients, caregivers, and industry. Outside of her blog, Kerri’s work can be found at diaTribe, dLife, and in diabetes outreach like JDRF’s Countdown magazine, in addition to her extensive diabetes YouTube channel. Well-versed in social media and its influence on patients, Kerri presents regularly at conferences, advocacy events such as BlogHer, Digital Pharma, Doctors 2.0 & You, SXSWi, and diabetes-specific events hosted by advocacy chapters. She currently works full-time as a writer and consultant.

Kerri and her husband, Chris, live in Rhode Island, USA with their daughter. Kerri’s first book, Balancing Diabetes, was released in Spring 2014.

Websites: http://sixuntilme.com & Balancing Diabetes on Amazon.com


Pamela Katz Ressler

Pamela Katz ResslerPamela Katz Ressler (@pamressler) is the founder of Stress Resources, a firm committed to building resilience and resources in individuals and organizations through connection, communication and compassion. As a faculty member and nurse researcher in the Pain Research, Education and Policy Program at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston MA, Pam co-authored the study Communicating the Experience of Chronic Pain and Illness through Blogging (JMIR 2012). Her research interests include increasing resilience in individuals with chronic illness and pain. A recognized thought leader on issues surrounding the intersection of social media and healthcare, Pam is the author of an online curriculum, Social Media for Nurses, and a featured contributor to Cognoscenti, on Boston’s NPR station, WBUR. For a longer bio of Pam and her work, please visit her website.

Websites: http://stressresources.com & http://cognoscenti.wbur.org/


Mike Lawson

Mike LawsonMike Lawson (@mrmikelawson) is passionate about diabetes advocacy and since his type 1 diabetes diagnosis, has used social media to find and give emotional support to others that are living with diabetes. He has been a member of the TuDiabetes community since 2008, and brings with him over ten years of non-profit management and web development skills.

At The Diabetes Hands Foundation, Mike is responsible for the overall user experience and oversees the development of the visual identity and branding of the organization.

When away from work, you can probably find Mike’s nose in a book. He loves contemporary fiction. Or uploading diabetes-related videos to his YouTube channel.

Websites: http://www.tudiabetes.org & http://www.diabeteshandsfoundation.org/