The concept of patient empowerment has been a part of my life for more than 20 years and is ingrained in the way I manage my own health needs and the work that I do to support others both personally and professionally. Sometimes I forget that others don't share the same beliefs and it can catch me off guard.
Last weekend I was part of a group working on a conference for cancer patients. There were no patients listed as conference speakers or providing information to the audience which will include healthcare providers, patients and caregivers. When I asked why there were no patients speaking and if we could add a patient presentation to the conference some of the people in the room were resistant and didn't seem to understand why a patient would want to hear from another patient. They seemed to think that just having medical professionals speak would provide a good conference for patients and felt that the act of bringing people together and presenting information was "empowering" them.
I know what I think of this. I'd like to hear what you think. Thanks.
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