Today I got to do one of my favorite things, talk about bringing the patient story into the conversation. This time, it took the form of a panel of Kaiser Permanente members who volunteered to share their health experience, some very intense, with Kaiser Permanente’s professional Brand, Communications, and Public Relations team, led by Diane Gage Lofgren, the Senior Vice President for Brand, Communications, and Public Relations ( @dianelofgren ).
The three members/families have gone through the process of signing official consents that their experience may be shared, and gave me permission to post the photographs below.
Olivia Stuckert’s story ( shown here in this video produced by University of California San Francisco ) shows the value of community collaboration and top notch medical care in making a difference for a young family. Christina Ahlstrand, who was featured in this article about Kaiser Permanente in The Economist , shows how a modern health care system can allow people to just live their lives , and Ryan MacGregor taught us about appreciating the impact that we can have, in the most difficult times, by connecting with our patients as people.
I was reminded today by Ryan, Christina, Stephanie, and Brent, that when people accumulate an incredible amount of health experience in a very short time or over a longer time, they often emerge wanting to share more, rather than less about it, even at the risk of reliving the pain they’ve felt (sometimes to the point of tears).
I have seen this same thinking in the efforts of Dave deBrokart ( @epatientdave ) and Regina Holliday ( @ReginaHolliday ) as well and I am moved every time. I think this a gift that exceptional people give so that all parts of a health system can focus on helping others heal faster.
They tell us that all that we have to do is ask and they’ll help. How can we not – we are fortunate and honored to bring this voice into our conversations.
In this case, by the way, several of my colleagues did ask, notably Holly Potter ( @htpotter ), Farra Levin ( @farralevin ) and Trish Doherty ( @trishdoherty ) – bringing the patient story in the conversation feels even better when it’s not my idea.
How do you bring or promote bringing patient stories into the work you do? Please post in the comments….