Surfers Louise Campbell and Jörn Schattenberg are joined by patient advocate Robert Mitchell-Thain, liver nurse Michelle Clayton, and healthcare consultant Stephen Callaghan to talk about their unique perspectives in the process of pathway development for NAFLD. In doing so, the group looks for ways to incorporate the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) established by the United Nations – an urgent call for action on health, economy, and starvation amongst other human rights issues.
This conversation begins by discussing the role of patients in the scope of allied health. Louise prompts the question, Where do they fit into the pathway? Robert identifies the many touch points and opportunities presented for patient inclusion. He also suggests that patients tend to communicate in terms of quality of life issues – not in the language of diagnostic scores. Michelle joins to highlight the importance of nurses and allied health professionals in the context of patient interactions. Nurses and allied health professionals can offer conversational insights that promote liver health. However, Jörn expresses the shared concern that a lack of funding tends to stretch nursing resources thin.
The discussion shifts to promoting liver health in a wider professional setting. Stephen speaks to the reality that “everyone is fighting their own corner” in advocacy and diagnostics. The group then explores ways by which more generalist testing can identify and capture at-risk patients earlier in the pathway. Patients presenting comorbidities need more than one therapy, more than one organ monitored, and more than one answer to their questions.