Tag Archive for: The Value of PEN

The Value of PEN: Bridging the Digital Divide

Bridging the Digital Divide from Patient Empowerment Network on Vimeo.

 Empowered patients who have access to knowledge and information about their illnesses, have better health outcomes, but with many of the best healthcare resources available online, a digital divide has formed among patients. Tech savvy patients are at a definite advantage, while some of the most vulnerable cancer patients, those 65 and older, don’t have the technical skills to access online resources. Patient Empowerment Network (PEN) is changing that with their Digitally Empowered® programs. The fifth and final video of the Value of PEN series highlights the digital sherpa Program, which is designed for people who are not tech savvy. The program helps older, disadvantaged patients and actively trains them, so they have the confidence to access online healthcare resources that are potentially lifesaving.

The digital sherpa® Program is a real advantage for patients, says PEN Board Member LaWanda Byrd. She explains that the program helps to bridge the digital gap so that patients can utilize all the technology available to them. She says many patients are not aware of the technology options and applications available. Through the program, patients are empowered to be more informed and more involved in managing their own care.

Patients don’t need to feel overwhelmed by learning the technology. The digital sherpa® Program is designed for people who aren’t tech savvy so that they can become tech savvy enough to get the information they need, says Board Member Scott Riccio. Access to more information helps patients make better decisions about their healthcare. 

PEN is improving health equity for vulnerable cancer patients through Digitally Empowered® programs. The free programs at PEN are available for all patients, no matter their age or circumstances, and they help provide better health outcomes for empowered patients. Watch the video and find out how you can get involved and get empowered through PEN.

The Value of PEN: Community and Connection

Community and Connection from Patient Empowerment Network on Vimeo.

 You are not alone. The Patient Empowerment Network (PEN) community understands the anxiety and uncertainty that comes with a cancer diagnosis. PEN helps patients through every step of their cancer journey and offers meaningful and valuable patient-to-patient connections. Video four, in a five-part series about the Value of PEN, focuses on the ways in which PEN helps patients connect with people who have a similar experience. Through social media channels, patient chats, and blog posts, PEN helps patients and caregivers feel empowered, informed, and less alone as they navigate the life-changing experience of a cancer diagnosis.

Nancy Gatschet is a PEN board member and a cancer survivor who emphasizes the need for patient-to-patient connection. She explains how important it is to have support from people who understand what you’re going through. She says, through PEN, patients can talk to each other and share experiences and that anyone anywhere can connect. The programs and resources offered through PEN are free and are available all hours of the day, every day.

When members of the PEN community connect, they find hope, says Board Member Scott Riccio. He describes the patient-to-patient connections as fantastic because through the community at PEN patients learn that they really are not alone and that there are other people who have been through what they are going through.

The chats on Twitter were particularly helpful to PEN Network Manager Carly Flumer, who is also a cancer survivor. She found that she was comfortable in the Twitter chats knowing that she could ask questions of other people with similar experiences who would understand her without judgement. Patients can follow the chats, called Tweet Chats, through the hashtag #patientchat.

 Getting connected and feeling less alone leads to patient empowerment, and the best cancer care happens when you’re empowered. Watch the video and find out how you can get involved and get connected through PEN.

The Value of PEN – Free Resources For Cancer Patients

Free Resources for Cancer Patients from Patient Empowerment Network on Vimeo.

The best cancer care comes when a patient is empowered with knowledge and the resources to know what questions to ask and when to ask them. Video three, in a five-part series about the Value of Patient Empowerment Network (PEN), highlights the free resources PEN offers for patients and their loved ones. Featured in the video are ways in which patients can easily engage with their doctors and other members of their care and support teams. From the comprehensive activity guide designed to make patients feel more relaxed and less overwhelmed during their cancer journey, to the scripted questions patients can use when meeting with their doctors, PEN is here to help.

PEN Board Member Nancy Gatschet is a cancer survivor, and she speaks from experience when she says that PEN is a tool to empowerment. She emphasizes that through the resources provided by PEN, cancer patients become comfortable communicating needs and feelings with doctors, friends, and other members of their support network. She says it’s important for cancer patients to speak up for themselves and that PEN helps patients do just that. Part of the free resources available through PEN 24 hours a day, seven days a week are questions and scripts that patients can use to prepare themselves to speak with their doctors. PEN helps patients identify the critical questions they need to ask and offers suggestions about how to ask them.

PEN encourages all patients to be empowered, but for many people a cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming. Board Member Asalia Goldberg says that there are so many unknowns that patients face when they are about to enter treatment, but if they are equipped with not only answers, but also the critical questions they need to ask, they become their own voice and their own advocate, and they become empowered through their cancer journey.

Through resources like the scripts and activity guide provided by PEN, patients can have more productive doctor appointments. There’s even a checklist for patients to use to make sure they didn’t forget anything. Learn more about the many free resources available through PEN’s website, workshops, webinars, social media channels, and network managers. Watch the video and find out how you can get involved.

The Value of PEN: Learn More about Your Diagnosis

Video Two of a Five-Part Series

Some of the most comprehensive tools and resources to help and support cancer patients and care partners are available through Patient Empowerment Network (PEN). Video two of the five-part series, The Power of PEN, focuses on the disease-specific networks and resources that PEN offers patients and care partners to learn more about their diagnosis. These resources provide essential information so that patients are better able to understand their diseases, stay informed about treatments and research regarding their diseases, and be active partners in care decisions. The resources in the PEN network are all available for free, with access 24 hours a day, every day.

In this second video, you will meet members of the PEN community who have first-hand knowledge of the benefits PEN has to offer. Board Member Asalia Goldberg notes that the PEN website can help empower and support patients during every piece of their cancer journey.

The PEN website is also useful for care partners, says PEN Network Manager Coordinator Nykema Mpama. She adds that care partners, as well as patients, have access to PEN’s disease network online library, which offers in-depth information and resources to use during a healthcare journey.

PEN’s library of information and resources provides a great deal of disease-specific information, adds PEN MPN Network Manager Jeff Bushnell, who is also a care partner. The wealth of information is collected from doctors and professionals in their fields, and from patients and caregivers.

The PEN resources are a gamechanger for cancer patients who previously didn’t have access to a hub of resources. PEN Board Member Nancy Gatschet shares that when she was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2006, there was no access to the types of tools offered by PEN. She says she is grateful that PEN provides the tools patients need to become educated about their diseases and to feel empowered. Knowledge is every patient’s superpower.

PEN is here to help. Watch the second video and find out how you can get involved.

Learn More about Your Diagnosis from Patient Empowerment Network on Vimeo.


The Value of PEN: Your Path to Patient Empowerment

Start here. That is the message Patient Empowerment Network (PEN) is sending to cancer patients and care partners in the first of a series of five videos introducing PEN and its programs. Getting a cancer diagnosis can be a confusing and overwhelming time. No one gives you a handbook to help guide you through treatment options, doctor visits, and all the information coming your way, and it can be hard to know where to begin to make sense of it all. PEN is where you begin. Through free online resources that help to educate cancer patients and care partners about the options for the best possible care available, PEN serves to guide and support you step by step through your cancer journey.

In this first video you will be introduced to PEN through three of the members who serve on PEN’s diverse, talented, and entrepreneurial-minded board of directors. Two of the members are also cancer survivors. Board Member Scott Riccio describes PEN as the first step to take after someone is diagnosed with cancer. He says that PEN shows patients how to learn what to do through empowerment and building confidence.

In addition to educating patients, Board Member and Cancer Survivor Nancy Gatschet says, PEN plays the role of coach for your cancer journey marathon. She says PEN empowers you every step of the way. Board Secretary and Cancer Survivor Dr. Sajjad Iqbal adds that PEN uses knowledge to empower cancer patients. Knowledge about your illness helps you to be proactive in your treatment, which can lead to a better outcome and higher survival rates.

As you will learn throughout this video series, PEN has a variety of programs to help improve a patient’s journey, and these resources are completely free and available to you any time you need them. You can access PEN 24 hours a day, every day. Cancer doesn’t take time off and neither do the PEN resources.

So, start here. Watch the first video, find out how PEN can support you, and get involved.

Your Path to Patient Empowerment from Patient Empowerment Network on Vimeo.