I recently had a chance to speak about PatientsLikeMe at the 3rd Annual Comal County Parkinson’s Support Group Symposium, held in New Braunfels, Texas, on Saturday October 1, 2011. Both the event and the support group were started by one of our longtime members, daddytom, who’s been part of PatientsLikeMe since 2007. As daddytom said:
“In July 2007 after much prodding from my bride…and my neurologist, I started the Comal County Parkinson’s Support Group. Thought I’d get it going then bow out after three or four months…Three and a half years later we have grown from six people to having over 160 folks registered with us…We have gone from meeting once a month to twice a month…What started as a laborious project has turned into a project of love.”
This year’s symposium featured presentations by two neurologists, Dr. Vikki Alvarez and Dr. Michael Merren, as well a presentation by a local speech pathologist. It was a great event to help educate and support Parkinson’s patients and their families in the Comal County area.
The audience included roughly 100 people, primarily Parkinson’s patients and their caregivers. I had a chance to meet a group of PatientsLikeMe members, and it was great to hear them talk about some of the ways they use PatientsLikeMe – as a support system, as a place to ask and answer questions from other ‘Parkies’ and as a resource for finding out more about what to expect as their Parkinson’s disease progressed.
What a great experience to meet some PatientsLikeMe members face to face. While we can’t be at every support group meeting, we’ve produced some great materials to help you talk about PatientsLikeMe with your own support group. Visit the Tell the World! page to find PatientsLikeMe flyers, slide decks and business cards.