The Magic of MedX 2016

29147773584_622475cebe_zOn my birthday, I traveled to San Francisco to participate in my favorite conference, Stanford Medicine X 2016! On Thursday, Sept 15, I participated in two interesting workshops and then the full conference took place Friday Sept 16 – Sunday Sept 18.

Although this was only my second year attending MedX, it felt like a homecoming of sorts. Over the past year I’ve been honored to participate in a few other MedX-affiliated events – an unforgettable White House workshop and an “experimental filming dinner party” in the Hollywood Hills.

As a narcolepsy and sleep advocate, it’s important to me to be involved in the broader patient advocacy community and participatory medicine movement to stay informed about what’s going on across healthcare and medicine. But MedX is even more than that. Quickly, MedX has become a family to me, a group of role models and friends who lift me up and show me new possibilities.

Looking back on MedX a few weeks later, I am processing all that I heard, learned and felt. Here are a few highlights:








julie-flygare-stanford-medicine-x-2016-medx-patient-advocate-narcolepsy-project-sleepWithout a doubt, MedX once again changed my perspective on healthcare and medicine. But I must admit, my favorite moment is an odd one. On Saturday night, some of the MedX crew got to visit Pace Gallery in Palo Alto. After enjoying relaxing dinner outside, I wandered aimlessly into the gallery with some fellow MedX-ers, unsure what to expect.

And then, we entered the Crystal Universe, an interactive LED light exhibit unlike anything I’ve ever seen. I was totally mesmerized and smiled awkwardly big as we slowly made our way through the maze.


A few of us raised our arms up to make Med “X”s and giggled. We are MedX. We are Everyone Included. The exhibit reminded me of the power of art to transform, to connect, to open our minds to new points-of-view. And isn’t that what MedX is doing too? That night, I couldn’t help but be filled with a renewed sense of hope.

Thank you to Dr. Larry Chu and the entire Medicine X board, staff and volunteers who made this an unforgettable MedX.

More fun photos:


  1. Gail Pean on October 21, 2016 at 2:51 am

    Congrats Julie!!

  2. Ashleigh on October 22, 2016 at 3:14 pm

    Dear Ms. Julie,
    I would like to know if you will be giving out a 2016 scholarship award this year. I was diagnosed with having narcolepsy since 2009. I am a senior in high school currently, looking forward to college in 2017. I would absolutely love to apply for the Jack and Julie Scholarship. Oh, by the way, we invested in your book some years ago when my diagnosis was concluded. I found it to be encouraging as I struggled with my challenges. Thank you much!

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