The month of October is Dysautonomia Awareness month! What is Dysautonomia, you ask? Dysautonomia is a dysfunction of the autonomic nervous system that can present in a variety of ways, affecting many different body systems. Are you getting flashbacks from neurology? Me too! Dysautonomia is often considered invisible, especially at first glance. Our PSU peer and colleague, Karyssa Stonick, has invisible chronic illnesses (including Dysautonomia) and reached out to form a partnership to spread the word about her story and advocacy work.
Throughout her medical journey, Karyssa has faced many challenges — some directly related to her health, and others related to biases that are ingrained in the current medical systems. She wants to use her story, and the adversity she has faced, to help promote changes in the medical field. One specific way in which these biases and discrimination may be evident and perpetuated is in the rhetoric of medical chart notes — which will be the next medical professional's first impression of the patient before the patient even enters the room. Karyssa has become an active advocate for promoting ways to address and change the stigmas that can be present and passed through medical notes, as well as bringing awareness to the reality of the impact these biases can have on a patient's ability to access the medical care they need
Look out for updates on when Karyssa's event will be!
Karyssa will be presenting at a future NSSLHA event regarding language use in and the rhetoric of SOAP notes, medical charts, and discussing ways to begin the process of combating biases that may be present.
Dysautonomia Awareness/Podcast Merchandise:
Karyssa and her friend/podcast cohost Sivani, are selling merch for Dysautonomia Awareness Month! It is also to promote their podcast. Check it out here:
The proceeds from her merchandise will be donated to Dysautonomia research. Find out more about Dysautonomia here: http://www.dysautonomiainternational.org/