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Renza Scibilia » ADS-ADEA 2013

Renza Scibilia

Renza Scibilia

Diabetes Australia – Vic

Renza Scibilia has lived with type 1 diabetes since April 1998. She is a well-known consumer advocate and peer leader for people with diabetes and promotes a patient-centred approach to healthcare, and in the development of diabetes information, resources and technologies.

For the last eleven years, Renza has worked at Diabetes Australia – Vic. She manages the Community and Consumer Engagement Programs which provide support, information and peer connections for people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, and their families. Renza is the National Program Leader for Youth and Type 1 Diabetes programs at Diabetes Australia Ltd.

She has worked on national programs including the development of information for young people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes transitioning from adolescent to adult care. She also managed national diabetes pregnancy projects which highlighted the importance of pre-pregnancy care for women type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

Renza is an active and well-regarded member of the global diabetes online community (DOC). She co-founded the #OzDOC community which is specifically for people with diabetes living in Australia. She is well-versed in social media, its influence on people with diabetes and its application in diabetes peer support. In July of this year she joined the Advisory Committee of the US-based Diabetes Community Advocacy Foundation (DCAF).

Renza is the creator and author of her own diabetes blog which she uses as a platform to identify and write about issues of interest to people living with diabetes. The blog, Diabetogenic (www.diabetogenic.wordpress.com), has received awards for excellence in diabetes writing. Her blog is one of Australia’s most widely-read patient blogs. She has also written for Open Forum and Mamamia and is a regular contributor to the Diabetes Australia – Vic blog.

In 2012 Renza was invited to attend the inaugural European Diabetes Bloggers Summit at the European Association for the Study of Diabetes meeting to discuss how diabetes online communications are being used to improve consumer engagement in Australia.

In June of this year, Renza was an invited speaker at the Doctors 2.0 and You conference in Paris and presented on the challenges of addressing the needs of consumers, HCPs and industry when using social media platforms. She has been asked to present again at the 2014 conference.

In November 2012 as part of her work at DA–Vic, Renza facilitated Australia’s first Diabetes Social Media Summit which brought together diabetes social media leaders. This highly successful event identified the key issues facing people with diabetes in Australia and provided strategies for how social media could be used to drive the agenda and promote the needs of individuals.

Renza was an early adopter of insulin pump therapy and has used a pump for almost 12 years. She has been using CGMS for the last 6 years. She is invited to speak regularly at consumer events as well as health professional forums about how this technology has improved her life.

In 2010, Renza was invited to speak at the Diabetes Australia Policy Forum where she discussed the importance of structured education programs for people living with diabetes. She was the consumer representative for the NHMRC Type 1 Diabetes Guidelines working party.