I have worked in health care public relations for more than 25 years and this June marks the seventh anniversary of TRG, the company I founded in 2016. Over these years, I have represented hospitals and health systems, medical societies, research institutes, and foundations spanning all sectors of the health care system. I’ve promoted scientific breakthroughs and rallied for patient advocacy organizations. I thought I understood the inner workings of the U.S. health care system, inside-out—until a close family member unexpectedly faced a diagnosis of advanced-stage cancer.
The last several months have been full of daunting obstacles as I struggled to help manage a family crisis taking place in another state. But I strongly believe that from every challenge emerges an opportunity. For me, I found many moments of gratitude. The airline industry gave me the ability to quickly and easily fly up and down the east coast. Telehealth enabled me to directly join my sister’s doctor’s meetings via a Zoom call or my iPhone. The internet gave me access to her patient portal and the ability to quickly research every term and test. This experience also reminded me that I chose the right profession and the right field. I love health and health care. The science behind her care is complicated and fascinating. This experience reaffirmed for me that this is my calling: working to improve access to quality care, helping patients advocate for themselves, and understanding and translating the complex jargon-filled language of medicine.
Everyone needs to know more about the science behind diseases and treatments, how federal policy changes impact the care they receive in their community, and how to coordinate among their providers and be an advocate for themselves. Health care PR plays a vital role in achieving these goals.
As we mark TRG’s seventh year in business, it is gratifying to see that health care continues to be one of the most pressing issues facing our great nation. Technology continues to bring great promise. We are closely watching and developing policies around AI, apps and other emerging technologies. We are truly excited about their potential to transform health, improve access to care, better manage chronic conditions and change the way we communicate about it.
In TRG’s history, 2017 was the year of increased workload with fewer resources in the PR services field; 2020 was the year of suddenly adapting to a remote virtual work world; and now 2023 marks the return of a work world of face-to-face client meetings, business travel, and a few power lunches and networking dinners.
When we opened our doors seven years ago, I said something that still holds true and that I keep near to my heart. “To give it my best – to really make it shine – I need to work with the best people; people who share my values and my commitment to excellence. I must work in a culture of support, in which our team members see that a major part of our work is to build each other up and help each other succeed.” I look forward to continuing to make that a reality at TRG for many years to come.