Pfizer Brings Together Jewish Community Leaders To Raise Broad Awareness of Gaucher Disease
Earlier this year, Pfizer brought together leaders of Jewish advocacy organizations from around the country for a roundtable event focused on Gaucher disease, the most common of 19 genetic disorders that disproportionately affect individuals of Ashkenazi Jewish descent. What resulted was a dynamic discussion and exchange of ideas focused on positively impacting the lives of people at risk for Gaucher disease, as well as those already diagnosed with the condition.
Leaders from 15 national and regional organizations participated, representing a range of Jewish denominations and interests. Attendees included representatives from the Jewish Federations of North America, Jewish Community Centers of North America, the Jewish Genetic Disease Consortium of Chicago, the Victor Center for the Prevention of Jewish Genetic Diseases, and several others. For many of the groups, this was a new discussion and important first step in creating an ongoing dialogue to help raise awareness and educate the Jewish community about Gaucher disease.
Jonathan Westin, Health Policy Director, The Jewish Federations of North America, which represents 153 Jewish Federations and 300 Network communities nationwide working together to raise funds for social welfare, social services and educational needs, kicked off the full-day event. He discussed the challenges relating to diagnosis and highlighted the progress that has been made in the Jewish genetic field over the past decade.
The roundtable event featured a number of educational presentations, a robust panel discussion, and one patient’s story of living with Gaucher disease. At the conclusion of the event, attendees returned to their respective organizations equipped with information to share and an interest in engaging with their communities on this important topic.