Your Communities Need You!

Black Lives Matter! Disability Rights! Women’s Right to Choose! Gimme My DaM Data! Calls to action. In the early 60’s my parents were Fair Housing activists. They were the first whites in Illinois to adopt mixed race children and were the first whites in their all white neighborhood to sell  their house to an African American couple. They successfully invited Martin Luther King to speak in their suburban high school.  In the late 60’s I marched against the Vietnam War, sat in, and became a draft counselor. Now I advocate for people at the center of health care.

What motivates people to advocate for change?  What actions do people take? For my immigrant parents, , the Civil Rights Movement opened their eyes to discrimination in their community. As holocaust survivors they knew discrimination. Some of my heroes in healthcare transformation, such as @CristinLind, @ePatientDave, @ReginaHolliday, Mary Anne Sterling, and @JackWhelan experience the craziness of healthcare. They take political, community, and personal action.

Today, I read a post by @GeriLynn Baumblatt, Executive Director of Patient Engagement at EMMI Solutions, Up & Out, Overcoming an Energy Canyon, about engaging patients in motivation and behavior change.  I love this graphic.

action chasm

A colleague send me an article this week from Sociology of Health and Illness, The impact of patient advocacy: the case of innovative breast cancer drug reimbursement by Roel Nahuis and Wouter P.C. Boon from Netherlands.  The article is a tough read. I appreciated their frame of Articulation that aims at creating awareness through public-agenda building; Negotiation that aims at alignment between interdependent stakeholders; and Politicization, a strategy to influence the agendas of political arenas.

I’m convinced that individual/family involvement in healthcare governance, design, operations and research materially changes that governance, design, operations, or research. I’m most actively involved right now in the research portion through my work with PCORI (Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute). In previous lives I’ve built and sponsored various Councils of People at the Center of Care and experienced the material benefits of that collaboration.

What is your call to action? Your communities need you!

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