On 24 June 2023, a Friends of Max Support Group Meeting was organized by The Max Foundation for CML & GIST patients at the Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute and Research Center in Delhi. We spoke to Shashi Kankani, one of the FOM City Chapter Leaders and asked her to share her thoughts and insights on the gathering:
Importance of Support Group Meetings for patients?
It’s extremely important to have these meetings held at regular intervals as they provide a great deal of inner strength to the participating patients. The patients and their families and caregivers while attending the meeting gain accurate knowledge about the disease, which in turn makes them stronger. As we all know any hurdle can be overcome with a strong resolve. It’s been proven that along with medication it is extremely important to have a strong will power.
What are your feelings when you meet the FOM community?
It’s always a pleasure meeting the FOM community. I always look forward to these meetings. For me it’s more of a family get together.
What are your thoughts on the interactive sessions organized at these Support Group Meetings?
The interactive sessions help to give us an insight into the disease and its management. We have so many doubts. Some are even myths, which are cleared at these sessions. We have some patients who share their problems, so we as a group, also become more aware of them. Most importantly, we also come to know about latest drugs and advancements in cancer treatment.
Do you have any expectations from the future FOM Meeting?
I feel we should have these meetings conducted more often. I would also like to see more patients enrolled so that we can together fight this battle in a better way.
5. What do you think of the ‘Know Your CML App’ workshop held during the meeting?
It was an excellent workshop. We could educate all the patients and caregivers regarding the benefits of installing the App in a fun and interactive way. The patients could easily understand the benefits of App and few of them even installed the app immediately. Others promised to install as soon as they got home. The greatest benefit of the App felt by the patients was that it is handy App to keep all their records and in case of emergency can be very useful. Personally, in my opinion, I feel that this App must be installed by each and every CML patient.