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Six in ten adults in the United States have a chronic disease, and four in ten have two or more!1 That is just in the United States. These illnesses include heart disease, diabetes, cancer, stroke, musculoskeletal disorders, autoimmune diseases, and more.
Now imagine wanting to meet people who have the same illnesses as you, someone who really gets what you’re going through. Easy peasy, you say, just search for a chronic illness on social media, and poof, they will appear. Sounds easy enough, right? Nope, there’s a lot more to it! That’s where Alike Health comes to the rescue!
Disclaimer: This blog post is sponsored by Alike Health. All opinions are my own and were in no way influenced by the sponsor. This blog post may also contain affiliate links. I may earn a small commission to fund my coffee drinking habit if you make a purchase. You will not be charged extra, and you’ll keep me supplied with caffeine. It’s a win for everyone. I am not a medical professional, and nothing stated in this article should be mistaken for medical advice…
Introducing the Alike Health App
Founder and CEO of Alike Amnon Bar-Lev is a passionate healthcare advocate and successful entrepreneur. At 56 and after a successful career in cybersecurity, he returned to pursue graduate studies at the Sackler School of Medicine at Tel Aviv University. Alike was created along with co-founders Professor Varda Shalev, a physician, and Ohad Zadok, a data scientist, to give patients a better understanding of their treatments and change how they use their medical information to improve healthcare for all.
How Chronic Illness Patients Benefit From the Alike Health App
Your experience matters!
The mission of Alike is to unlock the power of your health information so that you can become an integral part of your care team – ask the right questions, engage with patients who are on the same journey, and help others. With the use of artificial intelligence, the Alike Health App is able to connect you with people who have the same conditions and challenges.
Finding People Who Are Alike
I am a member of many online chronic illness groups. Some are dedicated to specific conditions or symptoms, while others, like my own, include many chronic illnesses. Either way, it is hard, if not impossible, to find out how many people in the group are on a similar journey. I can ask, but unless everyone in the group answers and new members sees my query, I will never really know how many are on the same path. That is where Alike comes in.
Alike makes finding people who get the uniqueness of my chronic life easy! Within minutes, the Alike Health app matched me with 67 people! The app even shows me how alike I am with each individual.
Learn More About The Impact Your Chronic Illness Has In Your Life
I was clueless about how each chronic illness diagnosis was going to impact my life. And when combined with other illnesses, that impact can improve or worsen in the blink of an eye.
It wasn’t until I began socializing with other chronically ill people that I realized how different the impact one illness could be on a person who didn’t have the same ones that I did.
Talking with people who are like me helps to discover patterns of how each diagnosis may set off a flare from another, which illnesses have similar symptoms, and how to tell the difference.
Knowing that I am not the only woman over 50 still suffering from endometriosis breaks my heart, but it is also comforting to know I am not alone. Having access to people who get my chronic life because they are living it too is priceless!
Discover Different Treatment Options
Learning that only 30% of medications approved for diseases were appropriate for targeted patients prompted the founders to create Alike. Instead of lumping all patients with one illness together, Alike looks at all varying factors such as age, other medical issues, lifestyle factors, and more.
There are no cures for my chronic illnesses and conditions, including psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis (spondylitis), fibromyalgia, endometriosis, and permanent damage from multiple surgical errors. But there are many treatments available to improve living with them and thriving alongside my medical reality.
Chronic illness treatment was the biggest concern I had about joining Alike. Was this app going to focus on pharmaceutical treatments solely? I was pleasantly surprised to find questions and discussions surrounding all types of treatments, including natural and alternative.
As an older woman still suffering from endometriosis post-hysterectomy, I don’t really fit into online groups. Yet, on Alike, I have not only found people like myself, but I am also learning more about the disease itself.
How Doctors Benefit From Alike Health App
Patients aren’t the only ones who benefit from Alike, our doctors do too! Whether they treat many, a few, or specialize in one illness, it is impossible to keep up with the latest information about every condition their patients have. Here are a couple of ways that I foresee Alike improving my doctor-patient relationships.
The information and insight that come from using the Alike Health App make great talking points for appointments. At the time of my psoriasis diagnosis, my doctor had never treated or examined a patient with it. The insight gained from Alike could have helped me understand that the rash was not the only symptom I was dealing with. Discussing those symptoms with my physician may have indicated that I also had psoriatic arthritis earlier than when I was diagnosed by accident two years later.
With Alike, patients can discuss different types of treatments with their doctor. A patient may feel left out because they have not been prescribed a medication that has appeared to benefit many of their chronic peers. A discussion with their physician may uncover a reason they never considered, like an allergy to an ingredient or another health factor that makes trying that drug too much of a risk. Or it may provide the opportunity to try something new.
Another way the Alike Health App benefits doctors is by providing them with the insight they aren’t going to get from their pool of patients alone. For example, it is pretty safe to assume that most doctors do not have a large patient base of women over 50, post-hysterectomy, who still suffer from endometriosis pain and complications. My doctor does not have anyone to compare my journey or symptoms with. But if I share what has helped others with the same issues, he has something to research and pursue to see if it is the right option for me.
Get Started Here!
Your identity and information are safe with Alike’s multi-layer privacy and security. Personal identifiers are removed upon medical records being connected. Nobody will be able to recognize you.
Then start meeting others who are like you!
Chronic Disease United States CDC Stats https://www.cdc.gov/chronicdisease/resources/infographic/chronic-diseases.htm