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Dr. Richard B. Colletti wishes ImproveCareNow 'Happy Trails!'

Dear ImproveCareNow Community,

After 15 years as its President and Executive Network Director, my last day with ImproveCareNow will be this Friday, July 31. It has been an exhilarating and profound journey.

The evolution of the ImproveCareNow Community has far exceeded everyone’s expectations—what you are today, none of us dared to imagine when we began in 2006. It is inspiring what the ImproveCareNow Community has accomplished—how you have improved the lives of so many. I have been fortunate to be able to work with you, to steal shamelessly and share seamlessly with you, and to experience your selflessness and compassion. I know you will continue to go far—to go further—together.

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Innovation Update – IV Sweatshirt prototype is comfortable and efficient

Ella and I want to thank you all for your incredible response to our first blog post where we introduced the IV Sweatshirt Project! If you haven’t read our story yet, we encourage you to start there – in it we share about Ella’s diagnosis with Crohn’s disease, our journey to find a treatment that worked for her, and how her experience ultimately led us to create something together to help kids like her stay warm and comfortable while getting infusions.

After a few trials and some delays due to COVID-19, we are excited to share that we have received a solid prototype of our IV sweatshirt design and have been able to test it at our infusion center!

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What I Need, When It’s Needed – Information on financial and insurance coverage issues

In February 2019 our Engagement Team asked the ICN Community to share what information, knowledge and know-how could help others living with IBD, and how best to get those resources into the hands of people who need them. Two weeks ago we shared feedback and resources related to “Information and resources to support psychosocial health.” Today, we're sharing about "Information on financial and insurance coverage issues."

We know there is more work to do, and this is the start of identifying resources that can help our community. If you know of any resources that address the topics shared in this post, please contact us so we can share seamlessly.

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I’m not sure it’s Crohn’s yet, but I’m building a strong support center within myself

I'm Lexi - a rising high school senior. In December 2019, I was having severe nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain. The doctor at Urgent Care thought my gallbladder was the cause of my pain and suggested I go to the emergency room immediately to have it removed. At the ER, after many tests, they determined it was not my gallbladder but could not figure out the cause of my pain. I was referred to a pediatric gastroenterologist.

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What I Need, When It’s Needed – Information and resources to support psychosocial health

In February 2019 our Engagement Team asked the ICN Community to share what information, knowledge and know-how could help others living with IBD, and how best to get those resources into the hands of people who need them. Two weeks ago we shared feedback and resources related to “Information and resources surrounding different facets of IBD.” Today, we're sharing feedback and resources related to "Information and resources to support psychosocial health."

We know there is more work to do, and this is the start of identifying resources that can help our community. If you know of any resources that address the topics shared in this post, please contact us so we can share seamlessly.

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I've begun experiencing more of life

Hi! My name is Laurel and I am a 20-year-old college student, majoring in Human Biology. I was diagnosed with Crohn's disease in 2012 and have been on biologic infusions ever since. One thing many people don't know about me is I absolutely love insects and am minoring in entomology!

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What I Need, When It’s Needed – Prioritizing What Our Community Wants and Needs

In February 2019, the ImproveCareNow Engagement Team surveyed CIRCLE community members to identify information, knowledge & know-how that could benefit others living with IBD and their families/caregivers. Specifically, we hoped to uncover resources and methods of sharing that would help us identify gaps in resources and information ImproveCareNow currently provides to the IBD community.

Seventy people took our survey, including patients with IBD and their parents/caregivers. We learned a great deal through our analysis of the survey results. At a high level, we were able to identify four key areas of need:

  • parents and patients want information and resources surrounding different facets of IBD, including:
    • general disease information
    • information on treatment
    • resources for helping them manage IBD
  • respondents want information and resources to support psychosocial health, including:
    • to promote emotional wellbeing
    • access to patient and caregiver support groups
  • respondents expressed difficulty with insurance coverage and financial issues
  • respondents shared diverse preferences for how and where they receive information

Below we will dive more deeply into the area of “Information and resources surrounding different facets of IBD.” Where possible, we will link directly to useful resources that may help address some of the specific needs expressed through the survey. We know there is more work to do, and this is the start of identifying resources that can help our community. If you know of any resources that address these topics, please contact us so we can share seamlessly.

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Never stop sharing your story!

Recently, I sent my Grandfather from out of town a surprise package. I took the time to search through all of the wonderful LOOP posts made by PAC members and pulled out all the posts I have written. I compiled them into a word document and attached the pictures as well. I made the font decently big and separated each article to make it easy to read. I printed a copy, wrote my Grandpa a note and sent the package on its way to Pennsylvania.

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Crohn's disease and my camping merit badge

My name is Benjamin and I am a rising senior in high school. I was diagnosed with Crohn's disease when I was 10 and a half. Since then, I have found joy in art, Boy Scouts, numerous sports, and theatre.

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