'If we can share and learn from our collective experience about what has worked for us, then we can make a leap in building a better future.'
Researcher, patient advocate, teacher…..and much more!
With 30 years’ experience in the field, and having supported hundreds of patients with chronic disease and cancer on their journey to wellness, the patient has always come first: their experience, their hurdles and their choices.
In 1986 I qualified as a Dietary Therapist, later as a naturopath – often working alongside conventional medicine, navigating each journey, learning the ropes and more about chronic disease, cancer and the health system than I could ever have imagined. The biggest wicked problem for all my patients was What is going to work best for me, with my condition, my circumstances and my preferences?
So, in 2005 I began my journey of developing a ready reckoner for patients that would allow them to rapidly filter through practitioners and treatments that could offer the most value in helping them get to where they wanted and needed to be. From these early beginnings the Smart Patient framework started to grow legs, and later in 2013, Smart Patient Journey Road Map was published.
We are now in the final stages of piloting the program, where anyone with a chronic condition, no matter how scant their medical knowledge, will be able to become a Smart Patient and make smart decisions. Once the pilot program is completed then we will be ready to launch the App which will be a platform for you to share and learn from each other’s experiences of what has worked for those with similar conditions and circumstances to yourself.
We are a small grass roots movement of able and active people who wish to be part of reshaping how our healthcare works today. The upshot of what we have found from the research to date is that our circumstances – our material and social needs – can make or break our journey, and without sufficient support or collective change from our family, friends, peers, social groups or community, it often becomes too difficult to make the lifestyle changes required to rebuild our health. There's no getting around it - we are all part of the problem and all part of the solution.