By Dr Irwin Lim, Rheumatology
The world works in surprising ways.
Seth Ginsberg, who lives in New York, was visiting Sydney. He has some newly obtained Aussie relatives, one of them being a doctor. Seth was keen to meet an Aussie rheumatologist to get a feel for the health system in this country and how it applied to patients with arthritis. This doctor tried to help by ringing his local rheumatologist who, for whatever reason, gave him my number instead.
I'm almost certain that that particular rheumatologist had no idea that I blog or tweet.
He's the co-founder of CreakyJoints. CreakyJoints was started in 1999 as a website with a simple objective of trying to provide relief for the people who landed on the site, relief in the form of humour or advice. This has grown to be an innovative advocacy group for patients with arthritis with over 55,000 members in its community.
Seth actively advocates on the State and Federal level in the USA for improved access-to-care, and as part of the Global Healthy Living Foundation, he is now trying to help mobilise patient advocacy efforts in communities around the world.
I spent an enjoyable hour chatting with Seth and his wife when they visited my clinic. He was passionate and engaging.
I find it amusing that he ended up by chance meeting me, the only Aussie rheumatologist who blogs regularly. I wouldn't have guessed that my consulting room would host a New Yorker who has leveraged the internet and social media so successfully to help drive patient advocacy.Dr Irwin Lim is a rheumatologist and a director of BJC Health. You should follow him on twitter here. Arthritis requires an integrated approach. We call this, Connected Care. Contact us.