“This represents my family, we share everything together.”
- PokieToo, PatientsLikeMe Parkinson’s Community
“The Patient Voice” is here! Are you ready to listen in? Today is the official premiere of our new PatientsLikeMeOnCallTM podcast, “The Patient Voice.” Our first guest is Parkinson’s community member, PokieToo. Pokie is the founder and creator of the PatientsLikeMe Parkinson’s quilt, a handmade and inspiring piece of patchwork pulled together by members all over the world. A valuable member of the PatientsLikeMe community, Pokie is recognized in the greater Parkison’s community as a leader and advocate. She has worked a lot with various nonprofits, including as a consultant for the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation Parkinson’s Quilt Project, and she’s the captain of our members’ Team PatientsLikeMe at the Parkinson’s Disease Unity Walk every year.
As you’ll learn from hearing from other members throughout this series, everyone knows her and loves her. Pokie is truly an inspiration to everyone she meets. Listen in to learn about how the PatientsLikeMe PD quilt was created, how it’s being used to empower other patients, and why she calls PatientsLikeMe her family.
On Thursday October 7, 2010, the PatientsLikeMeOnCall TM podcast is proud to present a new series called “The Patient Voice.” Through these podcasts, you’ll hear emotional and inspiring stories from our community members that demonstrate the type of sharing and positive connections being made by patients on our site and how these connections are affecting their lives.
For the first run in the series, we’ll be focusing on the PatientsLikeMe Parkinson’s community and hearing from members about a very special handmade quilt. A few years ago, members of this community came together online and decided to create the quilt as a fun activity to get them through the winter season. Each patch of the quilt is designed by a different member of the community and demonstrates, in a very personal way, something about the individual and her/his experience living with Parkinson’s disease. Initially a fun passion project, the quilt has become an expression of the power of community. Little did the quilters know how much their project would end up impacting their lives, the lives of other members, and, even beyond that, the lives of people in the Parkinson’s disease community as a whole. This quilt has traveled all over the world; it’s been featured in countless news publications spotlighting our members and their work with Parkinson’s disease; it was spotlighted by the Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center in their Health Living & Learning conference brochure; and it was, in part, the inspiration for the Parkinson’s Quilt Project being pulled together by the National Parkinson’s Foundation.
In this five part series, we will be talking to some of the members who contributed patches to the quilt as well as other people who have been touched by the quilt. To get you geared up for this series, here is a quick clip from our interview with PD community member, BrownCat.
The premiere launches this Thursday (October 7th) at 2pm EST with an interview with PokieToo, and the other interviews will run every Tuesday following. To listen to the series, you can subscribe to our iTunes page or you can find our podcasts on our PodBean page. Get ready to be moved by “The Patient Voice”…
Posted by Lori Piscatelli Scanlon | April 30, 2010
Last weekend, we headed to New York City in great anticipation of the 2010 Parkinson’s Unity Walk held each year in Central Park. We were excited once again to meet members of Team PatientsLikeMe, a group of patients who travel from across the country to meet one another and work tirelessly to raise money each year for the walk. Team PatientsLikeMe raised $13,000 and came in as #13 of the Top 25 fundraising teams for the 2010 Unity Walk.
This year, some of the team members were reuniting at the walk after meeting at previous Unity Walks; others were meeting for the very first time. The experience was inspiring and energizing. What we were able to see first-hand is how consistently and plentifully patients share – both online and off. In addition to sharing their health data and lives on PatientsLikeMe, we see how they also share their families, their stories, their dreams of a Parkinson’s-free future, and, at this unforgettable day in Central Park, their unwavering commitment to helping patients just like them. Representative of the thousands of patients in our communities, members of Team PatientsLikeMe are full of hope and inspiration and plenty of energy. We chased any person sporting a blue PatientsLikeMeInMotion t-shirt up and down “Find a Cure Boulevard” as they met other patients, registered at information booths, and took in the scene. It wasn’t always easy to keep up!
We finally pulled the team together (with the help of Team Captain, Pokietoo) as they posed for a team photo for the Unity Walk staff. As we do each year, we took the opportunity to get some pictures and video of the team sharing their thoughts about living with Parkinson’s and their experiences on PatientsLikeMe. Here’s a glimpse of a short video with Pokietoo telling us about the power of the patient voice. Be sure to also check out this video of members of Team PatientsLikeMe sharing their thoughts about living with Parkinson’s disease.
Thanks to Team PatientsLikeMe for opening your hearts, your arms and your lives for us once again this year. Thanks to our partners at the Unity Walk for creating such an amazing event for patients and research. And thanks to all of you who share every day in our communities. You truly inspire us.
Posted by Lori Piscatelli Scanlon | April 19, 2009
It’s Parkinson’s Awareness Month. As we continue to spread the word about this condition, we wanted to tell you a little bit more about our PatientsLikeMe Parkinson’s community. Launched two years ago this month, the community has steadily grown to include more than 3,400 patients. Below are some interesting facts about the community, as well as an interview with one of our members (“PokieToo”) giving her real-world experience of living with condition.
WHAT’S IT LIKE LIVING WITH PARKINSON’S DISEASE (PD)?
Meet PokieToo. A long-time member of our PD community, she tells us how she continues to “look for the sunshine” while “taking 30 pills a day.” “Out there for the next person,” PokieToo gives us a glimpse of the real-world experiences of living with Parkinson’s disease.
Some of the top topics “tagged” in our forum discussions to date include specific treatments (like Sinemet, Mirapex, Deep Brain Stimulation/DBS and Exercise), symptoms like tremors and depression, as well as other hot issues like SSDI (Social Security Disability Insurance), the annual Parkinson’s Unity Walk, stem cells, clinical trials and research.
At PatientsLikeMe, people with every type of condition are coming together to share their health experiences, find patients like them and learn how to take control of their health. The result is improved care for patients as well as an acceleration of real-world medical research.
Stay tuned to our blog for the latest happenings with our company, our patients and our mission of opening up the healthcare system.