Laurie has been involved in advocating on behalf of patients for more than 15 years. His desire to improve the health system is driven by surgery complications in the treatment of a family member. Laurie’s advocacy has involved establishment of the Fraser Coast Patient Support Group into Queensland Health, representing patients at the Davies Royal Commission into Queensland Health, preparing submissions for Parliamentary enquiries and the Royal commission into institutional abuse.Laurie’s knowledge as an Advocate for social justice and health stems over 25 years familiarising himself with the workings of not only the health system but family and child protection issues.His personal experience ranges from being a Parent-Aide, AFL junior coach/manager, and Advocate for child protection and Men`s Health.
Presently Laurie is advocating for the recognition into the Health impacts of forgotten Australians.
Jodie Guerrero Brisbane QldAmbassador
Jodie Guerrero is a triple cancer survivor, medical negligence survivor, transplant and GVHD x 5 survivor. She has survived six medical traumas any one of which she could have died from. Jodie is a young woman with several illnesses and disabilities as a result of delayed diagnosis. She mantains her passion and fire to see people with illness and disability & those vulnerable in society, given the chance to flourish.
Jodie is a blogger, inspiration & optimist with a successful website (www.jodiesjourney.com) where she discusses her on-going medical and health journey through Lymphoma, Pre-Leukaemia, and Transplant plus Graft vs. Host Disease’ (GVHD). Jodie has appeared on SBS as well as Channels 7 and 10. Her story has been written about in major newspapers including the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age.
Jodie has overcome massive difficulties to now become a health consumer advocate, registered with the Consumers Forum of Australia. Influential people are reading Jodie’s story, including Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth 2, Her Excellency Quentin Bryce,The Crown Princess of Denmark (Mary Donaldson) and The Duchess of Cambridge (Kate Middleton) plus top Australian politicians, amongst a few.
Jodie’s story knocks the socks of most people who read it. Delayed diagnosis of 11 months-21 doctors’visits-7 doctors-1 frantic trip to the ER, 10+ years fighting cancer x 3, Discipline of a former GP by her state medical board, plus she is Mum to two gorgeous disabled daughters. So far, she has endured 94 doses of chemo, radiotherapy and related treatments, to stay alive.
Jodie is currently working with an editor and NY based agent to prepare her full manuscript for publication.
Stephanie O’Connell MHC, A Dip A, MAICD Sydney NSW,Ambassador
Communications Strategist, Health Advocate, Speaker, Writer, Collaborator.
For Steph, has been a communications professional for 25 years. She started in consumer marketing and moved to strategic communications working in industries including medical research, government and international non-government organisations, sport, education, tourism, hospitality, and more – global businesses to start-ups and community groups. Today Steph is still developing creative, robust and bold strategic communications and crisis and issues management for corporate and community associations.
Steph spent 10 years leading the global communications for a health institute and NGO and has been dedicated to community work both in an outside the office. She recently campaigned for comprehensive health communications for young adults for Meningococcal vaccination awareness, with Meningococcal Australia, reaching national audiences and government stakeholders.
Today Steph’s works as Head of Public Affairs for a large institution in NSW and ACT. She is currently an Ambassador the Australian Patients Association and is an advocate for accessible vaccination programs. She recently joined the Expert Reference Group for Positive Living Skills, an early learning and primary school wellbeing program.
She has two daughters, Grace and Lily who are proud advocates. Together they have raised awareness about Meningococcal and are passionate about for an Australian organ donation ‘opt out’ policy.