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‘Sickle Cell Speaks’ Campaign Raises Awareness with Aim of Eroding Stigmas, GBT and Partners Say


In partnership with community organizations, Global Blood Therapeutics (GBT) is directing a national campaign to raising awareness and understanding of sickle cell disease, including among health professionals focused largely on pain crises, with the goal improving patient care.

Called Sickle Cell Speaks, the campaign highlights diverse stories told by patients, caregivers, friends, and family to educate others, and to help eradicate disease stigmas.

“The sickle cell experience is highly varied, and highlighting the personal stories of these individuals, as well as their family and friends, will help grow understanding and awareness of this condition,” Beverly Francis-Gibson, president and chief executive officer of the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, said in a news release. “We are proud to partner with GBT to help break down stigmas and make our voices heard.”

SCD patients can experience stigma bias for a variety of reasons, including race, disease status, socioeconomic status, delayed growth and puberty, and the acute pain that often has to be managed by prescription opioids, a 2018 article in the peer-reviewed journal Issues in Mental Health Nursing reported.

 

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