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    You are here : Home » Get Involved » MSRC Interactive » Help, Advice and Inspiration from people with MS » What Has Not Helped You » The Expert Patient Programme

    The Expert Patient Programme

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    Expert Patients Programme Logo

    If you live with a long-term illness, why not take control by becoming an Expert Patient. The Expert Patients Programme is a self-management course giving people the confidence, skills and knowledge to manage their condition better and be more in control of their lives.

    What is an Expert Patient?
    Expert patients are people living with a long-term health condition, who are able to take more control over their health by understanding and managing their conditions, leading to an improved quality of life.

    Benefits of becoming an Expert Patient

    Expert patients......

    • Feel confident and in control of their lives
    • Aim to manage their condition and its treatment in partnership with health care professionals
    • Communicate effectively with professionals and are willing to share responsibility on treatment
    • Are realistic about the impact of their disease on themselves and their family
    • Use their skills and knowledge to lead full lives.

    In response to Sue's Negative Experience

    It sounds like Sue had a difficult experience with the the Expert Patients Programme.  This is a shame as I know many people who live with MS who have benefited a great deal from attending an Expert Patients Programme course.

    In 1999, I attended a similar course in Northampton (same course, but not Expert Patients because this only came into existence in 2002) and then went on to train as a course tutor with The Expert Patients Programme (EPP) in early 2003. This was the time I really started to understand self management and since training as a tutor, my life has completely changed for the better.  

    Yes the course delivered by EPP was designed by an American nurse from Stanford University but the course is universal and has been adapted for a UK audience.  I remember when I first attended the course, I thought there was nothing I didn’t know, that I was already self managing myself…how wrong I was.  I now know that even as an expert self-manager, I will continue to learn every day.
    I am not sure where your course was held but all EPPCIC tutors go through rigorous training before delivering a course and because they have been course attendees prior to becoming a tutor they understand that patronising  people has hugely detrimental effects on learning.   
    One of the concepts that the EPP course has taught me is that the mind is like parachute and that it works best when it is open.
    EPPCIC courses may not be for everyone, but for many people living with all sorts of long-term conditions, the course is often the beginning of a positive change for the better.
    Lynne, Yorkshire.

    Sue's negative experience of the Expert Patients Programme

    I did it a few months ago and I have never come across a more patronising group of people in my life.

    I finished the course because it's in my nature to finish something that I've commited myself to.

    An article in The Times in January said 'Ministers are hoping to rescue the N.H.S. from its continuing cash problems through a semi-privatised scheme that trains patients to avoid hospital or their G.P.'

    Well...They were a bunch of amateurs literally and as for getting me to avoid going to my G.P. most of the talk was about how to form better relationships WITH the G.P.

    There's a book that goes with the course. I got mine three weeks after it started and they hadn't put any postage on it!!

    We were told that there would be a follow up survey a few weeks after the course. Asolutely nothing. When I tried to contact them to ask what had happened I was fobbed off. Mind you it might have been because they knew I was going to slate it.

    I had already informed one of my sleazy so called mentors that she was the most patronising person I had had the misfortune to encounter!!

    I did try to get something out of it ...honestly!! I can report that I did ALL of the course and learnt nothing.

    Expert Patient Programme my eye. Another yankee load of rubbish.


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