Lucy Prodgers, Graduate Teaching Assistant & Postgraduate Researcher, has provided a wealth of content and useful information around chronic illness. These materials have been collated for Staff Healthy week in order to help raise awareness of invisible conditions and symptoms, such as chronic pain and fatigue, and how they impact people in the workplace, as well as what you can do if you are experiencing these issues yourself. They were developed based on Lucy’s own experiences of illness over the past 20 years, Lucy’s ongoing research into patient experiences, and through conversations with others in the chronic illness community, including colleagues in the Chronic Pain & Fatigue staff and PGR Network, and the wonderful women of #WIASN (Women in Academia Support Network).
My name is Lucy Prodgers and I am a researcher in the School of Psychology. My work explores the experiences of people with chronic illness and the stories they tell about their experiences. I am also co-lead of the Chronic Pain & Fatigue staff and PGR Network. Outside of work I am a mum of two beautiful children. I also happen to have a range of complex and overlapping chronic diagnoses, including Crohn’s disease, psoriatic arthritis, drug-induced lupus, trigeminal autonomic cephalgia (try saying that one out loud!), hypertension….. I could go on.
If you’re an old hat at this, you don’t need me to tell you what to do, but if this is all new to you, you’re at a bit of a crossroads, or you are just intrigued, then I hope you find them helpful.
Lucy has collated information on the following areas. You can access the full information sheet for each area by clicking on the pdf images.
- What advice would you give to someone newly diagnosed with a chronic condition, or currently awaiting diagnosis?
Includes useful information about where and how you can get support and become more informed about your diagnosis and inform others around you of this; how to look after yourself emotionally and some useful support information for those who haven’t been given a diagnoses yet
- What can help you to manage your condition both inside and outside of work?
Includes information on the lifestyle changes you can make; how you can practice self-care; and how you can build your support network
- What can colleagues/managers do to better support you in the workplace?
Includes information around practical adaptations in the workplace, policy change, and how colleagues and managers can provide emotional support
- What would you like your colleagues or managers to know or understand about your condition which you currently feel they don’t?
Includes useful information around hidden illnesses and disabilities and the unpredictable nature of symptoms to equip colleagues/managers with a better understanding of chronic illness.
If you would like to join the UoL Chronic Pain & Fatigue staff and PGR Network or wish to ask Lucy anything about these materials, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org.