I’ve built my career around the power of coupling education and targeted brand messaging at the point of care to drive outcomes. However, it wasn’t until I became a patient myself in 2008 that I had the opportunity to truly see things from a patient’s perspective. My own journey with multiple myeloma confirmed my passion for point of care in a couple of critical ways.
Right Information, Right Place, Right Time
When I was diagnosed, there weren’t any interactive wallboards or guides on multiple myeloma in the office. Other than my discussion with my oncologist, I was on my own. I scoured the internet and was a bit fazed by the sheer volume of and vast differences in the information I encountered. Around the same time, I was fortunate to receive guidance from the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation. I couldn’t help noticing how much more confident I felt reviewing information from an organization I knew I could trust versus what I’d read online. Looking back, I think about how helpful it would have been to have trusted information in the exam room as I processed my diagnosis.
Seeing is Believing
Cancer is complicated. Without the right treatment, it’s going to do what it wants, when it wants, and it will look different in everyone. I found it incredibly difficult to wrap my head around something that was dramatically affecting my body in slow motion, yet I couldn’t see it for myself. However, when my doctor showed me visuals to help explain where the cancer was manifesting and how it would progress without treatment, I started to understand. And it was then that it became clear to me that patients could benefit from a better, curated health experience to really be able to converse with their provider in a meaningful way.
Knowledge is Power
While it’s one thing to receive information, it’s another to feel empowered to do something with it. I wouldn’t be where I am today without the disease education and treatment information I received along the way from trusted sources. Armed with this information, my family and I had educated conversations with my providers and charted the best care plan for me. Being a patient myself, I’m naturally passionate about “patient-centric” point-of-care content that:
- Meets patients where they are—literally and figuratively
- Is simple, actionable, and visually compelling
- Gives patients the confidence to play a leading role in choosing treatment options
I’m incredibly grateful to be healthy and in full remission. While there are obvious downsides to a cancer diagnosis, my journey has been enormously positive. I have the opportunity to lend my perspective as PatientPoint develops content for patients like me and I can be there for newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patients as an Imerman Angels survivor mentor. I can’t think of a better place to be.