Young woman with diabetes ready for morning run along the coast

A Unique Time

Young adults with diabetes have unique needs. Many of them are moving out of their family home, advancing their education, starting a career, deepening relationships, navigating the complex healthcare system, and exploring their independence. But diabetes can add a level of complexity to a young adult’s life. That’s why BIDMC at Joslin Diabetes Center offers a unique program designed especially for people ages 18-30.

The Young Adult Program offers:

  • Individualized visits with clinicians who specialize in young adult care
  • A 24/7 on-call provider
  • Educational visits with Certified Diabetes Educators who specialize in nutrition, exercise physiology and diabetes technology
  • Individualized and group visits with Behavioral Health experts
    • youngadult [at] (Email us) to find out about upcoming virtual group sessions for Joslin patients.
  • A compassionate, confidential, inclusive and judgment-free setting
  • Access to telehealth between onsite appointments

Our Young Adult Program tailors plans for young adults, taking into consideration their life goals and the emotional demands of living with diabetes.

Each one of our clinical team members offers expertise in diabetes management, as well as extensive experience with diabetes technologies, including insulin pumps and continuous glucose monitors. We also take into account the busy lives of young adults and partner with patients to create realistic goals.

The Young Adult Program welcomes patients of all genders and sexual identities.

LIFT-YA Program

We’d like to help you get where you want to be with diabetes so we created the LIFT-YA program which can give you more frequent appointments, more focus on setting goals and overcoming barriers, and help organizing the logistical side of your care.

LIFT-YA is a pathway of care within the Young Adult Program that is open to patients with type 1 diabetes who want to improve their glucose control and quality of life. It offers visits with a team of clinicians who understand the young adult stage of life. It also gives patients a centralized peer contact who can help with following through on things you discuss at appointments.

LIFT-YA is for people: 

  • Age 18-34
  • With type 1 diabetes
  • Whose diabetes isn’t optimally managed right now
  • And who can commit to appointments with their team, some virtual and some onsite, every few weeks for about 6 months

The LIFT-YA team includes:

  • Elena Toschi, MD is the director of the Young Adult Program. She focuses on improving the care and outcomes of people with type 1 diabetes through developing new ways to educate them, guiding their decision-making processes around daily diabetes tasks, and helping them take advantage of insulin pump and continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) technology as part of their self-management.
  • Giulio Romeo, MD is the Associate Medical Director of the Adult Diabetes clinic at Joslin. He studies how people become resistant to insulin leading up to their potential diagnosis of diabetes and is also interested in the relation between diabetes and problems with the heart and blood vessels. He is part of the Young Adult Program and has great understanding of pump and CGM use, physical activity, and challenges faced by young adults with T1D.
  • Jennie Votta, DNP, NP-C is a Doctor of Nursing Practice who is especially interested in nutrition and exercise. She is knowledgeable about diabetes technologies and is always striving to improve the quality of life for those living with diabetes. She enjoys helping patients create and work towards personal goals for their diabetes management that take into account the demands of everyday life.
  • Chelsey Gibson, BSN, RN provides education and self-management support for people living with diabetes. Gibson is a part of the Young Adult Program as well as the Joslin inpatient consult team. She emphasizes individualized care and strives to empower patients by providing them with the appropriate tools to succeed in their daily management.
  • Madeline Bennetti manages the Young Adult Program and coordinates patients’ transitions from pediatric to adult care. She enjoys educating peers about how to navigate the healthcare system with diabetes. She helps facilitate Joslin’s group programs for Young Adults and is interested in helping patients meet others with T1D.

LIFT-YA [at] (Email us) to inquire about the program and see if it’s a good fit for you.

FAQs for Prospective Patients

  • Is this just for people with type 1 diabetes? No, patients with all types of diabetes are well-served in the Young Adult Program. The only exception is diabetes in pregnancy – that is a separate special clinic at Joslin. Our support group and intensive program is currently just for those with type 1 though. We are working on developing more ways to support young people with T2D.
  • I turned 18, do I have to switch to an adult provider now? Not usually! The average age that patients transition from their pediatric care team into this program is 24. Joslin’s pediatrics department sees many patients through their college years.
  • I live far away, can I be seen virtually? Joslin isn’t able to provide exclusively virtual care. Young Adult patients commit to traveling to Boston for at least some appointments.
  • Will I have to switch from Young Adult to Adult? No, this program is within the Adult Diabetes clinic at BIDMC at Joslin Diabetes Center. Your care team won’t change due to turning 30.
  • How do I start my transition? youngadult [at] (Email the Young Adult Program) or call Joslin’s scheduling office at 617-309-2440.

FAQs for Existing Patients

  • Whom do I contact for a prescription refill, question or issue? Please call the Adult Diabetes clinic at 617-309-2400. Medical Office Coordinators who handle clinical matters and will get requests to the right provider if needed. You can also use the patient portal if it isn’t time-sensitive
  • How do I book my follow-up appointments? Call Joslin’s centralized scheduling office at 617-309-2440.
  • I go to a provider that isn’t listed here, am I not in the Young Adult Program? You are! All providers at Joslin can see Young Adult patients. Sometimes due to fit and availability, someone else is better for you who isn’t listed above. All the benefits of the Young Adult Program are still available to you.
  • Is there a way for me to get additional support and coordination of care? Yes. Check out the LIFT-YA program (Leveraging Intensive Follow-up Treatment for Young Adults).




Meet Our Specialists

Elena Toschi
Elena Toschi, MD
Research Associate and Staff Physician
Director, Young Adult Program
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Giulio Romeo
Giulio Romeo, MD
Assistant Investigator and Staff Physician
Associate Medical Director of the Adult Diabetes Section
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Roeland Middelbeek
Roeland Middelbeek, MD
Staff Physician
Assistant Investigator
Associate Program Director, Fellowship in Endocrinology, Diabetes & Metabolism, BIDMC-Joslin Diabetes Center
Assistant Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Associate Medical Director, Division of Global Education and Care Advisory
Susan Herzlinger-Botein
Susan Herzlinger-Botein, MD
Research Associate and Staff Physician
Instructor in Medicine, Harvard Medical School
Joanna Mitri
Joanna Mitri, MD, MS
Research Associate and Staff Physician
Assistant Professor, Harvard Medical School
Jennie Votta
Jennie Votta, DNP, NP-C
Nurse Practitioner
Fioralda Kico
Fioralda Kico, NP
Nurse Practitioner
Nicole Patience
Nicole Patience, MS, RDN, LDN,CDE, CEDRD
Nutrition Educator
Eating Disorder Specialist
Jacqueline Shahar
Jacqueline Shahar, MEd, RCEP, CDE
Manager, Clinical Exercise Physiology
Diabetes Care and Education Specialist
Clinical Exercise Physiologist
Mallory Sin
Mallory Sin, BS, RDN, LDN
Nutrition Educator

Classes & Events

More Than Half of Patients with Vision-Threatening Condition Unaware They Have It

Joslin Diabetes Center investigators’ study finds discrepancies between participants’ eye health status and their self-reported eye health. Read more.
Read more on More Than Half of Patients with Vision-Threatening Condition Unaware They Have It

In Brief: Preventing Beta Cell Dysfunction

Researchers at Joslin Diabetes Center address that chronically high sugar levels that occur during the early development of diabetes can affect the ability of beta cells to produce insulin.
Read more on In Brief: Preventing Beta Cell Dysfunction

For more information or to become a new young adult patient, call 617-309-1936 or email the YoungAdult [at] (Young Adult Coordinator)