“We are not alone”: IAPO visits member Fundación Psoriasis de Panamá

Monday, 28 September 2015

In August, following our Regional Meeting in Panama City, we were delighted to visit one of IAPO’s local members, Fundación Psoriasis de Panamá (FPP), and find out about their work.

What does FPP do?

FPP provides support and guidance to approximately 1,900 people with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis, as well as updated information on treatments and research programmes. It promotes awareness of the disease among the population in Panama, with the aim of reducing exclusion, rejection, and discrimination suffered by patients due to a lack of societal knowledge and understanding.

Psoriasis is a serious, chronic, non-communicable disease that physically and psychologically impacts the lives of patients and their families.

Raising awareness on World Psoriasis Day

From August to October this year, FPP are running a national awareness campaign, which will culminate in marking World Psoriasis Day on 29 October. Their activities include a journalism competition to encourage mass media to diffuse information about the disease and its characteristics; their annual awareness march, which had approximately 150 attendees; and visits from patients from across the country, to learn more about the disease, and how to deal with it.

Thanks to mass media, FPP can reach patients and their relatives all across the country. Having the support of the private sector, in the form of sponsorship, is very helpful, and having partnerships with other organizations like IAPO increases the impact FPP can make. Ana Teressa Meneses, Executive Director, said:

We are not alone. Our patients – 60,000 Panamanians and residents in Panama – are not alone. We can count on IAPO, and with your guidance and teaching we can better support these people.

A mini interview

Many thanks to FPP for hosting us, and taking the time to give an interview about their important work. For more details on what was said, listen to the full interview (Spanish), or read the transcript (English translation).

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