Thursday, June 30, 2011

New Ben's Friends Patient Support Communities

Some updates on Ben's Friends online patient support communities. We just started a new network for Erythromelalgia Support. Erythromelalgia attacks the lower extremities and is very painful. This network makes me especially proud because a current Kellogg student named Sara Lo heard about Ben's Friends at Kellogg and reached out to me. She wanted to help her friend Tawna who has suffered from Erythromelalgia and personally asked us to start a network. Sara and Tawna have begun to actively moderate and we have 10 people who joined in the first week, a new record for us.

We also re-booted our Multiple Myeloma Support Group because we know that condition is so acute and we weren't giving that network enough attention. We now have two terrific moderators, Danielle who is totally amazing and JC, one of the Ben's Friends superstars who has helped build up other networks. This network is going to take off in no time.

Many of you know that if you email us, we'll start a network for you, but we've hit some financial constraints and have had to create a waiting list. Our waiting list swelled to over 100 networks and it really bothered us. Ben came up with a terrific solution, create an umbrella Rare Disease Support Group where patients could still find support. When a specific disease group hits critical mass, we start a network for it. Please refer folks who need support to the umbrella group and they'll be on their way.

Finally, if you get a few moments, please subscribe and reblog the Ben's Friends Blog. We post wonderful patient testimonials everyday. Every time you reblog or link to us, it makes us more legit in Google's eyes and makes it easier for patients to find us.

Thanks so much for your support. We had 22,000 unique visitors in May, an increase of 15% in one month. We couldn't do it without you.