At the patients’ request, the program for the meeting will be a conversation by patients and among patients, with opportunities for one-on-one discussions. There will not be health care experts nor physicians on the program, as the patients would like to focus on individual stories and patient perspective.
“A group of ten Lyme disease patients came to me asking for help to establish a support group where they would feel comfortable sharing their experiences,” said BP Oddo. “Having been involved in Lyme disease awareness for many years, I immediately saw the value in this initiative and respected the patients’ interest in helping others suffering from this disease.”
In February 2018, the Borough President invited a group of Lyme disease patients to Borough Hall. It was there that the patients and the Borough President’s staff came up with the notion of holding an open forum for those suffering from the disease. Their goal was to provide a venue for Staten Islanders who want to communicate with other Lyme disease patients but don’t currently know how. The forum is designed to not only give comfort to others, but also to create an organizational structure for a support group network that will hold future sessions. Once established, the Lyme Disease Support Group will hold future meetings with medical professionals; however, their core mission is to create a comfortable venue for patients to share their stories.
The event will take place from 6:30-8:30 on Tuesday, April 24th at the Bernikow JCC (1466 Manor Road). Light refreshments will be served at the meeting. Please pre-register for the event by contacting Kelly Pereira at 718-816-2226 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.