For the second consecutive year, Texas Children’s Hospital hosted a day of recognition for the families and survivors of Autoimmune Encephalitis (AE). Last year, the event was called a Day of Hope. This year it was called Day of Strength.
Organized by Pediatric Rheumatologist Dr. Eyal Muscal and held on July 27 at the United Way-Greater Houston, the purpose of the event was to provide a space for patients to receive updates about their disease, attend sessions about coping strategies, and take advantage of opportunities to connect with other AE patients and families. This year’s program focused on coping and resiliency and also included special activities to honor siblings of AE patients and, for the first time, breakout sessions for adult AE patients and families.
Various organizations participated in the event, including the Anti-NMDA Receptor Encephalitis Foundation, Inc. Foundation President Nesrin Shaheen was a guest speaker at the event and addressed the importance and the huge strides that have been made by the AE Community of Caregivers and Survivors over the past 10 years in raising the profile of AE and particularly, anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis which still leads the pack in prevalence.
“We salute, Dr. Muscal for his enlightened leadership in recognizing the families affected by this important disease,” Shaheen said.
Muscal applauded everyone who participated in the event and to those who helped organize it, including Sarah Brock, Christina Cowperthwait, Monica Guevara and Chivon McMullen-Jackson.