These three words (collaboration, connections, community) come to my mind when I think of ImproveCareNow (ICN). And they represent three reasons I love leading our Family Advisory Council and sharing ICN with the families of Dayton Children’s. These are my people. They understand my life. They, too, know what it’s like to parent a child with IBD.

It is for all of these reasons that I am thrilled to host Virtual Community Conference (VCC) Watch Parties – so we can collaborate, connect and feel like we’re part of a community.

The goal for our first VCC watch party in June was simple: Raise awareness!

With very little preplanning, we achieved this and so much more. A handful of advisory council families attended and connected. They gave great feedback and suggestions about how the watch party, and the VCC could be improved. They suggested new topics, shorter sessions, and more interaction. And, in true quality improvement fashion, our friends at ICN listened and collaborated with our parent team to make changes.

So, with a fresh format, we had a new goal for our October watch party: Increase participation!

For three weeks, nurses handed out invitations to IBD families in clinic and during infusions. One of our IBD parents visited families of children who were hospitalized. We posted about the event to our Virtual Advisory Council and sent emails to over 30 parents who have expressed interest in ICN. And we more than doubled participation to fifteen.

Not only did we have more parents, but more staff attended, too. And I think this opportunity to connect is key because, when we come together through ICN, we don’t segregate into groups of doctors, nurses, patients and parents. We integrate into a community of warriors battling IBD side by side. Everyone’s input is valuable. Every voice counts. All teach. All learn.

I can’t stress enough how important it is for families and providers to connect in this way. And I can’t tell you how much I look forward to the next VCC. Because I know that together we can achieve great things – until there is a CURE!


Stay in the LOOP - sign up for updates and never miss a post! 

Read more posts by Parents on LOOP >>

Built by Veracity Media on NationBuilder