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This Too Shall Pass 

We’ve all heard this expression countless times in a variety of contexts, and today, more than ever, it encourages hope for a better tomorrow as communities across the globe continue to cope with COVID-19. 

This week, AARDA was honored to participate in two webinars to assist the autoimmune community prepare and cope during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Special thanks to The Myositis Association for an excellent session on precautions and best practices for improving indoor air quality and home environments during the global pandemic and beyond. AARDA’s founder, Virginia Ladd, joined subject matter experts to discuss the environmental hazards and precautions autoimmune patients need to take to keep their homes safe and germ-free. “COVID-19 is an inside experience, and we all must take extra precautions to minimize the risks in our home environment,” she said. We also heard from patient advocate Felicia Brown about her challenging medical conditions that worsened in her home from exposure to second-hand smoke, forcing her to quit her job and move cross country. Felicia works tirelessly to call attention to the forgotten “neighbor next door” and has been successful in getting laws passed in several states that address second-hand smoke in multi-housing units. Drs. Rohit Aggarwal and Iazsmin Bauer Ventura provided medical advice on self-protection and improving health and wellness. Click here for the TMI webinar.

 

On Thursday, AARDA hosted a webinar on coping with stress during the global pandemic. AARDA Board Member and patient advocate, Lilly Stairs, moderated the discussion with Dr. Robert Phillips and Dr. Neilanjan Nandi. Dr. Phillips reminded us of the importance of self-care, relaxation, and best practices for balancing daily needs and priorities and provided suggestions on how to deal with the frustrations that lead to increased stress. Dr. Nandi talked about the increase in telehealth practices and offered strategies on how to best leverage this new trend while increasing protections for patients and healthcare providers. And, Anna Legassie shared her inspirational journey as a patient and how she has channeled her experiences into becoming an advocate to raise awareness about the challenges and opportunities for improving healthcare policies for better health and wellness.

AARDA continues to receive an overwhelming positive response to the National Briefing earlier this month, co-hosted with CDC, driving nearly 35k views to our COVID-19 resource page. Our subject matter experts and healthcare professionals continue to answer the thousands of questions submitted. The presentations from the National Briefing and the Managing Stress webinar can be found on the resource page, as well as registries, self-help tools, and best practices. 

We are extremely fortunate for your continued engagement and are appreciative of the commitment and efforts from colleagues, healthcare professionals, and advocates, especially during this incredibly busy, trying time. On behalf of the AARDA staff and the autoimmune community, we believe that “this too shall pass” and sincerely hope everyone stays safe and healthy.  

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