In the news…

A few months ago, I was contacted by a writer looking to do a story about a patient for the American College of Rheumatology‘s online magazine, “The Rheumatologist“. She wanted to talk to someone who had attending the ACR’s annual Advocates for Arthritis event in Washington DC.  I was honored someone recommended me for the article.  We spoke back in June but after all this time, I thought the article may have been shelved.  Someone forwarded it to me yesterday.  I’m thrilled.  Thank you to Karen Appold and the ACR for sharing my story of being both a patient AND a patient advocate.

Let me know what you think!  Click below to check out the article on The Rheumatologist.

Managing Multiple Rheumatic Diseases: How One Patient Copes with Her Disabilities & Advocates for Others


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Kelly holds masters degrees in both Special Education and Speech-Language Pathology. She works full-time as a speech-language pathologist in both a public school setting and as an adjunct faculty member at a university, in Philadelphia, PA. She specializes in both autism and augmentative/alternative communication and took her skills to Uganda, Africa to start a special needs program for disabled children living in an orphanage in 2011. Kelly began experiencing symptoms of autoimmune arthritis in 1984 (while in her teens) but wasn’t officially diagnosed with autoimmune arthritis until 2001. Her first diagnosis was Sjogren’s syndrome. Eventually her diagnosis was changed to sero-negative RA and now Polyarticular Spondlyoarthropathy. She also manages thyroid disease (resulting from Graves Disease), fibromyalgia, renin-deficient hypertension, and disseminated superficial actinic porokeratosis (DSAP) on a daily basis. Kelly connected with other autoimmune arthritis patients via social media in 2008. She began volunteering with the “Buckle Me UP! Movement”, which evolved into the International Autoimmune Arthritis Movement (IAAM) beginning in 2009. Then became a cofounder of IFAA in 2013. She has represented the ACR on Capitol Hill as an Advocate for Arthritis, was a finalist in Wego Health’s Health Activist Hero awards in 2014, and speaks at various healthcare conferences as a patient advocate in the Philadelphia area.

3 thoughts on “In the news…

    1. It typically opens in June. I want to do it again. Unfortunately, it occurs in September, when I just go back to work, which makes it hard for me to take off. The best was when I went with my nephew. I was so proud of him.


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