Monday, August 17, 2015

From the Caregivers Perspective ~ Stanford MedX 2015

Less than 6 weeks til Stanford MedX! What an exciting adventure! So many wonderful things will be taking place! An event where healthcare and technology merge together in a display of how we as patients, caregivers and medical professionals can better improve patient experience and outcomes.

I'm a caregiver, but I'm also a patient thanks to that job of care giving. I come to MedX seeking to relate the two worlds, and how we can improve the lives of the family and friends we care for as well as our own lives as caregivers.

I'm a pediatric caregiver, which is a very special sub sect of the caregiver role. I'm the caregiver, but I'm also the parent. I'm the cook, the maid, the nurse. I'm her medical coordinator. I spend countless hours scheduling appointments with doctors and case managers.

With all that I do to just "keep her alive", it can easily be seen how I myself became the patient, in the form of mental illness.

So what can I bring to MedX? What can MedX teach me? I am so excited to find out. I'm looking forward to the Ignite! talks and speakers. I am so very excited to meet Dr. Larry Chu, and thank him for this wonderful opportunity!

I plan to come at each and every discussion from direction of the caregiver and how it associates to my role as caregiver, and also my role as patient. I will especially look to how we can relate this to the world of pediatrics.

In my workshop, I plan to discuss how we as caregivers, parents, and medical professionals can have easy access to data on our patients, whether they be lab results, radiological reports, and anything pertinent to the daily care of the individual. By allowing caregivers, and patients access to their own data, we can encourage active participation in health care, and have better outcomes as a result. eHealth is the future of all aspects of health care, and it is a vital necessity for medically complex children.

Medicine X is just the place to do this. I am so excited to have been chosen as a delegate this year. I have spent the last few years working to change the world of medically complex children, with special emphasis on children born with Heterotaxy Syndrome and Complex Congenital Heart Defects.

I also want to bring the issue of mental health as a caregiver to the forefront at MedX. So many of my fellow delegates not only have chronic health issues, but most of us suffer from some kind of mental health issue. Be it depression, anxiety, or the like, we all have been through the mental and emotional trials our condition or our loved ones condition has brought upon us. It is time to stop the stigma and embrace mental health.

I cannot wait to meet my fellow warriors at MedX. Together we will merge health care, social media, and technology into the best year for MedX yet!

I close with my utmost favorite quote that describes this band of warriors known as MedX delegates and Alumni.....

"Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars." ~ Khalil Gibran

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