November 29, 2021

Patient & Community Voices: Impacts of Poorly Understood Chronic Conditions

Allies in Health: CanLyme

On November 23 we held our second Patient & Community Voices workshop in the 2021-22 series. Unmet Health Care Needs: The Impacts of Poorly Understood Chronic Conditions was attended by 24 students from eight different disciplines including audiology, dietetics, nursing, occupational therapy, pharmacy, physical therapy, speech language pathology, and social work. Dr. Luis Nacul, Medical and Research Director of the Complex Chronic Diseases Program at BC Women’s Hospital was also in attendance.

Through the personal stories and experiences shared by patients and caregivers, students explored three conditions that are poorly understood – Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), Fibromyalgia (FM), and Lyme disease. Students rated the workshop highly (4.13 out 5) compared to other educational experiences they have had on the topics and learned about ways they can support patients with complex chronic conditions in practice.

“I learned about the lived experiences of people with FM, ME and Lyme disease, the stigma associated with complex chronic diseases, symptoms management strategies that help people with FM/ME and how to engage and support as a practitioner,” said an occupational therapy student.

“I learned about the existence of ME, and really learned about the life experiences of people living with these chronic diseases and how debilitating and stigmatizing it can be. I also learned about the importance of respecting, validating and listening to the patient and their experiences,” said a dietetics student.

The workshop is a partnership with ME Victoria AssociationMEFM Society of BCNational MEFM Action Network, and BC Lyme Association.

Stay tuned for more patient-led workshops next term!

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