Chronic pain, medical choices, tech, & health equity converge in a free-wheeling conversation with the Patient-Family Advisor Network chronic pain task force.
Melissa Reynolds talks Yoga. With chronic pain and fatigue, there’s such a variation. Some people are always at high levels of pain. Some people vary. There are various stages within fibromyalgia and chronic pain and chronic fatigue. Plus, you have other things going on. Some people also have arthritis where their chronic pain comes from. Or there are other complexities. You can’t say, “this is how you do yoga for chronic pain.” Key is letting people see that they have choices, so there’s never a push. They don’t need to be aiming for anything. They need to listen to their body and do what jells with their body. What feels nice? For too long, we’ve been told you have to push yourself. You’ve got to get to this point. This is your goal. I’m sick of external goals I want to work on my own goals.
Best health builds on trust – trust in people, institutions, information, and solutions. I trust my primary care doc. I trust my chiropractor. I trust my instincts. I trust my gut. I do. I trust my wife. She trusts me. Trust doesn’t mean blind following. Rather trust leads to more control or feeling more in control. I need trust when I’m in a crisis and can’t think clearly. I listen to my immediate family and my two lead docs (in that order). I’m likely to do what they recommend. Trust is for when I need to decide but can’t or don’t want to. Trust is for times of uncertainty.
I depend on my team – laypeople and professionals – to help me understand my body, abilities, circumstances, moods, and reactions. Profound understanding promotes self-appreciation – loving myself as I am. On my professional team, my primary care doc, chiropractor, massage therapist, neurologist, optometrist, physical therapist, and acupuncturist are the strongest and most important professionals for me. I’ve learned which of their skills help me, how they communicate with me, and what work I need to do to maximize their impact. This episode begins an intermittent series about the professionals on my health team, starting with Dr. Keith Puri, my chiropractor. I’ve learned much from Dr. Puri about maximizing my gross motor capabilities through good habits. I’m indebted to him. Listen in or read on.
Careful what you wish for. Health equity and participatory medicine depend on the widespread meaningful use of patient family advisors. The trickle of such advisors should be a stream. Unfortunately, even if the supply could meet demand, health care administrators, researchers, entrepreneurs lack skill in making good use of patient family advisors. Libby Hoy leads Patient Family-Centered Care Partners, a small organization with a large vision for improving the quality, safety, and experience of healthcare through the development of authentic partnerships from the bedside caregiving relationship to the boardroom.