Blog

Next Lymphedema Support Groups

Talking with others and getting needed support is key to living with lymphedema. Join us for sharing and educational presentations focused on living with this challenging condition. Meetings provide a safe and non-judgmental environment to give and receive support.  Sponsored by the Northwest Lymphedema Center.

Facilitated by: Dianne Graham, MA, LMHC  & Basha Brownstein, MSW

Day: 2nd Saturday of every month     Time: 11am-1:00pm

May 13, June 10, July 8 (Rändi Sundby MSPT, ATC, who is a physical therapist certified in Lymphedema treatment, will demonstrate compression bandaging techniques), August 12 (“The Benefits of Aqua Therapy for Lymphedema” by Julia Szilard, DPT)

Location: Dorothy O’Brien Center, MP Room

6522 Fremont Avenue North Seattle, WA  98103

If you would like more information about groups or the other free classes and services that Cancer Lifeline offers please call the 24-hour Lifeline at (206) 297-2500, (800) 255-5505 or visit our website http://www.cancerlifeline.org/

Lymphedema Treatment Act Update-BIG NEWS!

Exciting news! The Lymphedema Treatment Act was introduced in the Senate in early December by Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Chuck Grassley (R-IA), Mark Kirk (R-IL) and Chuck Schumer (D-NY)

It is extremely important that your Senators hear from you. Please contact your Senators to ask them to cosponsor the Lymphedema Treatment Act!

The house bill has 176 cosponsors! Click here for live updates!

Thank you to all who have written, phoned and/or met with your Representative.  If your Rep has cosponsored, thank them and tell them why you care.

Please learn more about the LTA, see videos below and go to www.lymphedemaTreatment Act.org

Video LTA : Join Us! Video LTA:  Public Service Announcement

To learn how you can get involved and make a difference, please contact:

Elaine Eigeman lepatientadvocate@gmail.com

206-525-0181 •  206-618-3969

2015 Lymphedema Retreat at Harmony Hill Another Huge Success!

Lynn Fass, patient educator and NWLC Board President shared a brief synopsis of the retreat: Julie and I feel the Retreat was a huge success. Many expressed that it was “life changing”. It brought tears to my eyes when I sat in the Harmony Hill Circle of 23 women living with lymphedema. What an awesome support group! We open and close the Retreat by all sitting in a circle. A heart shaped rock is passed around, and each participant is asked to express what they are feeling in their heart at that moment with one word. My word was “connection”. At the Retreat we all connected personally to one another. But more then that, we connected people through the support and resources of therapists, physicians, garment fitters, and the medical community.

WP_20150517_15_20_16_Pro WP_20150517_09_06_22_Pro

NWLC Board Members presentations about Lymphedema

Board Member Presentations

The Northwest Lymphedema Center’s patient education program is expanding by way of presentations being presented through the auspices of the Seattle Chapter of Cancer Lifeline, also a non-profit which serves cancer patients and their families.

Lynn Fass, president of our Board and Julie Venn, LMP, also a Board member, are presenting a seminar on lymphedema (below), designed to proactively educate cancer patients.

LYMPHEDEMA: WHAT CANCER PATIENTS & SURVIVORS NEED TO KNOW
In this presentation we will discuss the anatomy and function of the lymphatic system and what happens when that system is damaged, potentially causing lymphedema, a post-surgery condition. We will review some of the risk factors for developing lymphedema and early signs and symptoms of the condition that could trigger someone to pursue treatment. We will also discuss methods of treatment and management of the condition and strategies for living with lymphedema when it occurs.

Lynn Fass will present this material on Wednesday March 11th from 6:00-8:00 pm at Northwest Hospital in Seattle, WA. It will be held in the Medical Arts Building, Suite 112.

Julie Venn will present this material on Wednesday, March 18th 2015 from 1:00 to 2:00 pm at Valley Medical Center in Renton, WA. It will be held in the Medical Arts Center, in the Breast Center Conference Room.

Register for these free classes now on the Cancer Lifeline website.

Cathy Bates brings Public Focus to Lymphedema Treatment

Actress Cathy Bates recently appeared on The Doctors television show to discuss her own lymphedema experience and how it was addressed. Her interview appears on the the show’s website and can be viewed here.

The Lymphedema Treatment Act (LTA) is gaining momentum in Congress!

The Northwest Lymphedema Center
Endorses the Lymphedema TreatmentAct

 The Northwest Lymphedema Center is proud to endorse the Lymphedema Treatment Act. Many of our board members also participate individually in the grass-roots movement supporting this legislation. Learn more…

 

 

HELP PASS THE LYMPHEDEMA TREATMENT ACT !

DID YOU KNOW?  Medicare does not cover garments and other lymphedema compression supplies!
This Federal bill aims to correct this and set a standard for private insurers to follow.

PATIENTS LIKE YOU MUST SPEAK UP!  Visit our website to write to your members of Congress.
Learn more about this bill and the quick and easy ways you can support its passage.

www.LymphedemaTreatmentAct.org

What Will This Legislation Do?

LTA: The Lymphedema Treatment Cost Saving Act will improve coverage for the treatment of lymphedema from any cause. This federal bill aims to correct the present deficiencies in coverage for lymphedema treatment compression garments and supplies. Because under-treated lymphedema is progressive and leads to infection, disability and disfigurement, treatment becomes complex and more costly when the disease is not treated early and maintained effectively.

Medicare alone is spending millions of dollars every year treating often-preventable lymphedema complications and cellulitis infections by its failure to cover compression bandages and garments that are essential components in the standard of care, Complete Decongestive Therapy. This act will reduce health care costs while improving patient care and quality of life. By changing Medicare law, it would set a standard for private insurance policies to follow, thus improving the quality of care for all Americans living with lymphedema.

The revised LTA was introduced in the 113th Congress as HR 3877 by lead-sponsor Congressman Dave Reichert of WA and bi-partisan co-leads. Follow the website and sign up to receive a monthly newsletter that will keep you informed.

The LTA Needs Your Help!

HOW YOU CAN HELP:  Having no paid lobbyists, this cause is entirely grassroots and patient-driven. We need all lymphedema patients along with their families, caring friends and medical teams to help us pass this bill by writing letters and advocating for the bill.

LAG: The Lymphedema Advocacy Group, the leading national proponent of this legislation, is an all-volunteer organization of patients, caregivers, healthcare professionals and industry partners founded by Heather Ferguson. Their mission is to advance lymphedema care in the United States by advocating for improved insurance coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of the disease. You can download an informational flyer here to print and give to friends and colleagues to educate them about this movement and challenge them to help and get involved in this wonderful effort.

WA-Team: More locally, the Lymphedema Patient Advocates of Washington is a grassroots movement advocating for patients. One of their priorities is lobbying legislators and helping to gather patient letters and public support for the bill. They have made some great strides in the past several years, beginning with an epic journey to Washington DC in 2011 for lobbying and advocacy and, more recently, securing support from Washington State’s Congressman Dave Reichert, a member of the influential House Ways and Means Committee, who has agreed to be lead sponsor of the bill and to help seek bipartisan support for its passage into law. Read about their contributions, successes and new challenges here.

Self-Advocacy Class for Lymphedema Patients

OVERCOME OBSTACLES


Understand Lymphedema.
Know your resources.
Learn to be your own best advocate.

   Click here for next location, date & time this class is offered.

  This free class will to help you learn to live
a full and active life with lymphedema.


 Discover Your Resources
Learn about the multitude of local & national resources to help you manage and/or prevent lymphedema.
•  Find Your Power
Learn ways to help yourself and others thrive with lymphedema while living active, full and joyful lives.
•  Give and Get Support
Help build a community of lyphedema patients, non-profit organizations, lymphedema therapists, medical professionals and suppliers who work together to manage lymphedema.
•  Get a Legislative Update
Legislation to procure insurance coverage for lymphedema care and compression garments is under way. You can help.
 LIVE WITH JOY
 More info:
Contact Elaine Eigeman: LEpatientadvocate@gmail.com | Phone: 206-525-0181 |
Cell: 206-618-3969

Click here to download a printable flyer for location, date and time for our next class.

The Northwest Lymphedema Center presents this FREE class in collaboration with Cancer Lifeline