As 2017 winds down, we’re all reflecting on the year we’ve had. At WEGO Health, we launched WEGO Health Experts and did our very best to improve healthcare and the lives of Patient Leaders everywhere.
But WEGO Health isn’t the only one out there changing healthcare! Far from it, in fact.
Each and every day our Patient Leaders inspire us with the transformational work they’re executing. It’s truly something to celebrate! And to celebrate our leaders, we asked our Patient Leader Connection Facebook Group* what they were most proud of accomplishing this year. This is what they had to say!
What did you accomplish this year that you’re most proud of?
“Professionally, I’m most proud of the podcast episodes I produced in the past year with many amazing guests. Personally, I’m most proud of increasing my exercise/movement practices which inadvertently help me with my professional endeavors. ” – Leslie Krongold, Glass is Half Full Podcast
“I registered with PRAI helping to build an alliance between myself, FibroFlutters and research within our local areas. Proud to be supporting the National Institute of Health (NIHR) at a time when patient involvement is becoming a bigger part of the research process and #patientvoice is becoming an important key factor behind research progressing into the future. The way I look at it is that we have been shouting for years for changes and now those changes are occurring. We are embracing those changes and hope to help others to do the same, and hopefully they’ll also choose to get involved with research. – Carole Scrafton, FibroFlutters
“I am really proud that I was selected to be a 2017-2018 Young Advocate for Living Beyond Breast Cancer. It’s another way for me to support others who have been affected by breast cancer.” – Katie Parker, Breast Cancer Patient Leader
“I was a featured panelist speaker at the first-ever Patient-Focused Drug Development Meeting on Hyperhidrosis. I spoke to the FDA, pharmaceutical companies and industry innovators about what those with excessive sweating need when it comes to treatment options and support. When you know sweat, it becomes no sweat!” – Maria Thomas, My Life as a Puddle
“Beginning in January 2017, I started to write my own Blog. I had tried in the past although was not in a position where I could invest as much time as I could. Working FT along with two small children at home compounded with my medical issues I lost focus. This year, our children are older and both in school, due to my health I have had to step away from the work environment. I have been able to put concerted efforts into my Blog and received incredible feedback. My intent was to simply share my experiences so far, now I have built an amazing network of friends whom can relate. I find myself not only helping others, rather others helping me as well ” – Dave Head, Life is How You Live It
Spoke at the United Nations for World Down Syndrome Day in March. Was the Interim Executive Director at Lumind RDS. Attended the first Leadership Summit with National Down Syndrome Society and advocated on Capitol Hill with our State Representatives and Congresspeople and then, of course, winning the Advocating for Another from WEGO Health and having my husband and son there to see me get my award was awesome!” – Marla Murasko, Musings From a Special Needs Mom
“I have served on an 11 member, patient only, team of advisors for PatientsLikeMe. It has been an amazing experience to be able to truly help make an impact on both the corporate and community sides. I also started my blog, “A Dummies Guide to Learning to Live as a Patient Instead of a Nurse.” It has taken off and my pen name, AutonomicRN is now an official twitter handle as of last week. There is a facebook page as well and I’m getting ready to copyright the name and logo. Exciting things in the face of living each day with a disease that does what it wants.” – Kimberly Hartmann, A “Dummies” Guide To Learning To Live As A Patient Instead Of A Nurse
“Went on live TV for The Arthritis Society! Launched my blog. Wrote a letter to every Premier of the country, Health Canada and Trudeau about doing more for the #1 cause of disability in Canada.” – Eileen Davidson, Chronic Eileen
“Finally able to convince some people that suicide is not an act of selfishness. That in most cases – people who end their lives do so to lift the perceived burden of their illness – up and away from loved ones. That the way a mind is working when suicide becomes a serious option… being a “coward” or “looking for an easy way out” is an outdated way of thinking that won’t change the outcome if expressed in that way.This is an attitude that I have seen in some very smart people that I never would have expected to see… but there it was. Through persistence I have changed some minds.” – Susan Jillian Smith, Fibromyalgia Patient Leader
“I became the Patient Advisor for the Everett, WA Providence Home Health Patient Satisfaction Action Group. It has been very interesting being the patient “voice” to the home health providers. We are working on revising the patient information packet that is given out on the first visit and I am pleased and proud that some of my suggestions are being used in the new version. For my personal and professional development, I began my PhD program at Northcentral University in October!” – Zoann Murphy, Chronic Illness Patient Leader
“March 20th of 2017, I started my Facebook Community, The Fibromyalgia Pain Chronicles, which thus far has garnered over 4800 Page likes and additional 5,000 followers in less than 9 months. On May 12th, my annual Awareness campaign, “Pop And Put On Purple To Promote Fibromyalgia Awareness” Trended on Facebook in 5 different countries. Further, despite battling FM and recovering from Hip Surgery, in May 2017, I was also able to participate in a Fibromyalgia Awareness Photoshoot which was aimed at promoting Fibro Awareness, Education, Strength And Hope!” – Kristal Kent, The Fibromyalgia Pain Chronicles
“I was in a really cool CPAP commercial for ResMed!” – Stacy Erickson Edwards, CPAP Babes
We can’t even begin to express how proud we are of these Patient Leaders and all of the members of our network. The sky is the limit for 2018!
We’d love to hear from YOU! What did you accomplish this year that you’d like to celebrate? Make sure to add it in the comments so we can sing your accolades from the rooftops as well.
Looking to connect and learn from other Patients Leaders like the ones above? We’d love you to join our Patient Leader Network. By creating a WEGO Health Account you’ll have access to opportunities to work with healthcare and collaborate to make change.
*If you’re already a WEGO Health Account holder, be sure to take advantage of our closed Facebook group. This wonderful community is a great way to make connections across condition areas and to learn from other Patient Leaders.