Disruptive Innovations US Speakers

Jeri Burtchell

Patient Advocate and Author

Gilenya & Me

Jeri was born in western New York and moved aboard a 42’ schooner with her family at the age of 12. She traveled Europe with her Army husband in the early 80s. After graduating from St. Augustine Technical Center with a degree in printing and graphic arts, she went on to own her own printing and sign company for 10 years.

Jeri was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1999 after the birth of her second son. She entered a clinical trial (TRANSFORMS) conducted by Novartis in August 2007. She blogged her entire trial experience from start to finish at http://gilenya.blogspot.com. Jeri connected with other patients in similar trials and formed lasting bonds with them via Yahoo Groups, message boards and Facebook groups. All of these patients shared their experiences in what has been called a “pioneering” fashion, paving the way for further conversation about  social media and the role of the e-patient in future clinical trials.

Jeri resides in north Florida and is the single mother to two sons. She is a web designer, author, blogger, patient advocate and MS activist.

Return to Speakers page »