Patna Meeting Report by Nitesh Kumar Verma

A CML and GIST Patient Support Group Meeting was organized by The Max Foundation for Friends of Max, on Saturday, 30 March 2024, at AIIMS Patna. Nitesh Kumar Verma, local FOM City Chapter Leader, was interviewed and asked to share his views:

Patient Support Group Meetings give strength to all CML and GIST patients. The interactions are very healthy and energetic. Unlike a regular patient group meeting, FOM meeting is a platform where patients can meet other patients who are positive minded and after meeting such patients, help them to also feel more encouraged and motivated.

These meetings act as a fresh lifeline which revigorate all patients and help them face their cancer journey with renewed energy, positivity and hope.

I have witnessed many changes over the years. Today we have digital audio-visual presentations reflecting our previous meetings from across India and inspiring patient stories to encourage patients. The session with Physicians and the new workshops helps patients to learn about the latest developments from the world of CML from reliable sources. This helps us to stay updated and make informed choices.

In future meetings I would like to see dance and music used in some way to give an opportunity for patients to bond with each other and at the same time help us

showcase our skills.

What I notice is the remarkable change in patients from their first FOM meeting to the next meeting and every progressive meeting thereafter. There is so much more confidence in the patient, they now come excited to the meetings and with double energy! It is always a pleasure.