Each day of May for Lyme Awareness Month in 2015, we at whatislyme.com would like to recognize someone in the Lyme community that has done something to try to help the Lyme community. There are several “unsung heroes” in our community and we would like to just offer them a little recognition and make sure that their achievements and efforts don’t go unnoticed.
Today we would like to recognize Kristin Collins and Jennifer Christie.
Originally these were going to be two seperate articles, but Jennifer and Kristin work together on so many projects, we thought it would be fun to do a page on them together.
Jennifer’s first Lyme awareness event was at St. Norbert’s Coillege in De Pere. Dr. Burrascano came and did a talk to much larger group than they thought would come out! Cindy VanVehgel and Jennifer came up with the idea to start a Lyme non profit as a way to get into the medical conferences for a discount price to raise awareness and to be able to fund raise at the county fair and Celebrate De Pere festival. They focused on educating doctors believing they were simply under informed and not truly evil for not knowing how to treat Lyme patients. They asked support group leaders from around the state to join them and the WLN was born.”
In the beginning they focused on the DNR, public health nurses etc. The newsletter (The View) was written and mailed out with an offer to send doctors out to ILADS for free training. 10 doctors were recruited and sent to Dr. Cameron to learn how to treat Lyme disease.
The next year Jennifer held a CME accredited class at the Medical College of WI. Dr. Cameron came out to do the class and had a nice 2 hour dinner meeting with the president of the college. The next year Bellin Memorial Hospital had Dr. Cameron out for their medical CME conference.
Jennifer said she was thrilled to hold the first annual Worldwide Lyme awareness event out front of Bellin Memorial Hospital. We premiered Angeli’s LymeLight movie in 2013.
The next year she held the event in Madison to a much larger crowd with numerous speakers. This year Erica Zentner is picking up the job and our event will be infront of St Elizabeth’s Hospital in Appleton. The goal of educating doctors is still important to us.”
Kristin has been the President and Medical Liaison for 3 of the 4 years for Wisconsin Lyme Network (WLN). VP and Medical Liaison first year. WLN started in fall of 2011.
Kirstin has done various talks with VP Jennifer Christie to organizations such as the Ice Age Alliance Chapter of Waukesha. Answer the patient and practitioner emails for the WLN.
Kristin has assisted in promoting Lyme Awareness through the WLN by getting 5 billboards up in SW Wisconsin in fall of 2013 prior to hunting season, to alert hunters and holiday shoppers and travelers of Lyme Disease.
In July of 2013, Kristin did an awareness video with Jennifer Christie, VP per Discover Media for the WCA Group Health Trust with Dr. Hoffmann. The WCA is a state and governmental insurance agency for the state of WI. This was a video for their health topics on their website. Received the most hits of all their videos regarding health topics.
Kristin continually assist patients in finding physicians and answering questions via phone, texting amd social networking daily.
She worked to get information on the Waukesha Public School Districts Website regarding Lyme disease and for the school to promote awareness to parents of children going on outdoor field trips in writing about the risks and need for prevention prior to the field trips.
Kristin has done multiple informational tables at Waukesha US Bank for awareness.
Note from Lisa Hilton: I have had the pleasure of working with Kristin and Jennifer on several occasions, including being on the board of the non profit they have started. These two are both hard workers with genuine ethics. They have both gone above and beyond trying to bring about awareness on Lyme disease and co infections. They are awesome good friends to many of us in the community and I am honored to be able to feature them in the “activist of the day” May awareness campaign. Thank you Jennifer and Kristin, for all you !