In honor of National Family Caregivers Month in November, Social Health Network hosted a panel to hear from community members Richard Faust, Auldyn Matthews, and Frances McInerney about their experiences caring for their loved ones. If you are a healthcare leader who has been a caregiver, or is caring for a loved one, we encourage you to check out this group.
Encouragement is one of the most important aspects of being a caregiver. In this group, leaders delve into topics related to self-care, medication advocacy and support for loved ones, caregiving research, and more. Auldyn and Frances add their unique perspective on what it’s like to be a “young” carer and give up parts of their lives to care for a loved one. Whether you’re caring for a spouse, parent, or loved one, these guides cover topics relevant to your journey.
About the panelists
In addition to being one of the ProstateCancer.net contributors, Richard is the site administrator. His father-in-law was diagnosed with prostate cancer in late 2019.
Richard is the managing director of the Health Union website (parent company of ProstateCancer.net) and an accomplished technologist, author, and researcher in health, science and technology, and policy. He was introduced to Health Union by his wife, Kelly Mack, who has juvenile idiopathic arthritis and is a contributor to RheumatoidArthritis.net.
Auldyn is a carer for her husband, Keegan, who was diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis in 2014. Auldyn has known Keegan through pain, even when they started dating 10 years ago. Over the years they have sought out doctors, surgeons, and health care providers to explain the abnormality to their family.
After their daughter was born in 2018, Keegan was diagnosed with severe arthritis in her entire hip from her AS and received two hip replacements. Throughout her time as a caregiver, Auldyn has done tons of research on AS, osteoarthritis in young patients, and pain management to help Keegan through his illness.
As the primary caregiver for her father, John, who was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease in 2017, Frances works alongside her mother to manage the challenges of the disease. In her experiences living with and caring for her father, Frances has been able to use her expertise as a speech therapist to improve verbal and nonverbal communication, foster interpersonal relationships, and support independence and day-to-day skills.
Frances’ passion for advocating for people with neurological conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease, combined with her knowledge of speech and language, provides a unique perspective to the group.