In recent years, there has been an alarming rise in illnesses that defy diagnosis through clinical tests or have no known cure. Millions of people, especially women, with illnesses such as irritable bowel syndrome, chronic pain, and chronic fatigue syndrome face skepticism from physicians and the public alike. And people with diseases as varied as cardiovascular disease, HIV, certain cancers, and Type 2 diabetes have been accused of causing preventable illnesses through their lifestyle choices. Through research and patient narratives, health writer Laurie Edwards explores patient rights, the role of social media in medical advocacy, the origins of our attitudes about chronic illness, and much more.
Booklist recently gave In the Kingdom of the Sick a starred review, calling it “An indispensable book for anyone with or concerned about chronic disease, and everyone interested in the health professions,” and Kirkus Reviews called it “A timely call to attention to a global health problem.”
Laurie Edwards has a BA from Georgetown University, an M.F.A. from Emerson College, and teaches health and science writing at Northeastern University. She’s written for the Boston Globe, the Boston Globe Magazine, and many other outlets, and her health care blog, A Chronic Dose, was featured in Wired as a go-to source for analysis of presidential health care platforms. In 2009, she was invited to participate in a round-table discussion about health care with President Bill Clinton at the Clinton Foundation. She’s particularly interested in patient engagement, social media and patient advocacy, and chronic illness and public health. Edwards is author of Life Disrupted, named one of 2008’s Best Consumer Health Books by Library Journal, and Publisher’s Weekly calls her “wise, generous, and a terrific storyteller.” Edwards is also a contributor to Cognoscenti, WBUR's ideas and opinions page, and has been published in the New York Times.
This event if free and open to the public, refreshments will be served. Please contact Tom Urell at T.urell [at] neu.edu with questions or to RSVP.