Conference Season

This past month has been super busy and now I feel like my batteries are on empty or even below empty if they can go that low!

Along with work and lacrosse research seems to have been playing a massive role and there has been so much to do.

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The first big event over the last wee while was the NHS Research Scotland Conference held in Perth Concert Hall. I was giving the plenary along with 2 others. We all spoke about our story with asthma over the last 70 plus years both before and with the NHS. I will write it up properly as the talk I found to be really interesting even though I was part of it the other 2 speakers had such interesting stories about asthma care and its evolution. The best part about the conference was the number of patient and public involvement volunteers that were present. Compared to the previous year’s conference which was focusing on “Patients at the heart of research” and I was the only patient present- or the only person there in a patient capacity and being involved in research as a lay person (I am aware that everyone can be a patient and everyone could do PPI but everyone else was there in a research capacity which I wasn’t). I did write a blog post about it and how I was the only patient present etc. I expressed that it would be great if more PPI volunteers could be there in future as they are vital to good research and beneficial research. So this year 2 volunteers and Allison our PPI advisor spoke at the Plenary and then there were PPI volunteers on each of the panel discussions and final discussions. This was great to see. We also had a PPI stand where researchers, PPI volunteers or anyone could come and speak to us about PPI, how to involve people in research etc. This was really popular and so glad I suggested it and it came out good.

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Other than some small research projects the other big event I was at was the International Perspectives of Patient and Public Involvement in Research Conference. I was presenting at this twice one with other PPI volunteers and the other with one the PPI advisor from the Edinburgh Clinical Research Facility in Edinburgh. The event was in Newcastle and it was interesting, a learning experience for sure and has really opened my eyes to some things. I have quite a few blog topics to write up on the back of this conference due to various issues that arose including being given a Naked Bar as an alternative snack because they were not sure if the cake, which was provided to go with coffee, had nuts in it or not. It is really serious that they thought this was ok to give me a naked bar but what they failed to do or check was if they were nut free. They are not. They are basically made from nuts. The organisers should count themselves lucky because had I been illiterate and took them at their word and ate  said bar I would have certainly ended up in hospital as a result. It would have been their fault. This is just one of a number of events and blog topics which will be coming.

For now I just need to rest and regain my energy and concentrate on me for a little bit. Normal service will be resumed soon and more blog posts will be coming with full write ups of what has been happening.

Early night and lazy morning is on the cards and then off to the hospital tomorrow for review with the asthma nurses and getting my 4th Mepolizumab injection.

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