Where Does the Patient Fit?

Patient advocate Alan Blaustein visited a number of doctors, a handful of wrong diagnoses, and a dozen unnecessary prescriptions before finally being diagnosed with a rare form of cancer. Here, he shares his story and describes his hope for a reformed system and better communication among health providers in the near future.

Alan was diagnosed with thymic cancer in 2005. Since that time, he has focused much of his efforts on helping patients and caregivers make better decisions in the face of the healthcare system’s complexities. He has started a number of successful ventures (e.g., OpenSky.com) and spends as much time as he can on charitable activities (e.g., The Foundation for Thymic Cancer). Most importantly though, he is the father of three wonderful kids for whom he wants to set a lasting example of the right way to do things.