Haematology Nurses and Immune Thrombocytopenia

A Night of Education with Our Frontline Heroes

In April, ITP Australia and New Zealand was invited to speak with healthcare professionals in Melbourne to educate healthcare professionals in Melbourne to share the experiences and challenges that ITP patients encounter.

As the CEO of ITP Australia and New Zealand, and an ITP patient myself, I had the privilege of participating in an extraordinary evening event hosted by Sobi in Melbourne in April. The event was designed to bring together 40 dedicated nurses to discuss advancements in Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP) and Paroxysmal Nocturnal Hemoglobinuria (PNH). This gathering was not just a professional milestone but also a deeply personal journey for me, as I shared my story and connected with those who are at the forefront of patient care.

The evening began with a lively game of ITP Bingo, a brilliant icebreaker that set a warm and engaging tone for the night. The game, originally launched at the 2024 ITP Patient Conference in Canberra, helped the nurses familiarise themselves with important ITP-related terms and concepts in a fun and interactive way. It was wonderful to see everyone laughing and learning together, peppered with a little competition, which paved the way for the presentations to follow.

The Challenges and Needs of ITP Patients

After ITP Bingo, I felt a mixture of nervousness and excitement as I wanted to convey the real-life challenges and needs of those living with ITP. I shared my personal journey which has now spanned 9 years, highlighting the physical and emotional hurdles I’ve faced. It was important for me to express how critical patient-centred care and effective communication between healthcare providers and patients are in managing this chronic illness. The nurses’ attentiveness and empathy during my talk were deeply touching, reinforcing the bond between them as the first point of call for many patients.

Insightful Presentation on ITP Therapy

Rebecca Dring, a Clinical Nurse Practitioner at Royal Melbourne Hospital, followed up with a comprehensive update on ITP therapies and a few case studies. Her depth of knowledge of Immune Thrombocytopenia and clarity in explaining the latest advancements in treatment options was truly impressive. She emphasised the importance of personalised treatment plans and the critical role nurses play in managing and monitoring patient responses. Rebecca’s insights reminded me of the dedicated care I’ve received and underscored the importance of continuous education in improving patient outcomes.

Inspiring Talk on PNH

The evening concluded with Michael Brown, a Clinical Nurse Consultant and colleague of Rebecca’s at Royal Melbourne Hospital, who delivered an enlightening presentation on PNH. Michael’s detailed explanation of the pathophysiology of PNH and the innovative approach of the new therapy was both educational and inspiring. It was a powerful reminder of the advancements in medical science and the hope they bring to patients.

Reflecting on the Evening

As the event drew to a close, I felt a profound sense of gratitude and inspiration. The evening not only provided valuable knowledge but also fostered a strong sense of community among the attending haematology nurses. Their dedication and passion for improving patient care were evident throughout the night.

Thank you to Sobi for hosting the event, and inviting ITP Australia and New Zealand to participate, and it was an honour to share the experience with Rebecca and Michael.

Leaving the event, I was filled with renewed purpose and optimism. The knowledge shared and the connections made will undoubtedly enhance the care provided to ITP and PNH patients. This evening was a testament to the power of collaboration, education, and empathy in transforming patient care and improving lives.


Note: This event was sponsored by Sobi