For many of us, CLL is not the only chronic health problem we are living with. This is a recognised issue in CLL treatment, with papers covering the challenges of dealing with patient comorbidities*. Further, with our higher risk of infections and secondary cancers, we are more likely to find ourselves in the situation of needing medical care involving multiple specialities. Some members have already recounted the frustration of dealing with 'silos' of different medical specialist streams and the difficulty in getting them all communicating and working together to help us through a health challenge.
* In medicine, comorbidity is the presence of one or more additional disorders (or diseases) co-occurring with a primary disease or disorder; or the effect of such additional disorders or diseases. (Wikipedia)
With that background, this article by Don Campbell, Professor of Medicine at Monash University, Melbourne, Australia is particularly interesting:
While much of the background is Australia specific, the article notes that "This is also the case in the United Kingdom, where the Royal College of Physicians recently recommended a radical overhaul of the purpose and role of hospitals. The college argues that in future, hospital will need more generalists and fewer specialists."
Also note the reference to the Mayo Clinic in the USA, a recognised centre of excellence for CLL research and treatment: "This fresh approach is starting to appear in a diverse range of settings, such as the Mayo Clinic, where the Center for Innovation’s mission is to transform the experience and delivery of health care through the application of design thinking.
Will our health care systems be up to the challenge?
Photo: New Holland Honeyeater