Meridith O'Connor, MSW

Patient Leader

Writer, speaker, and community leader, Meridith O’Connor is a health and wellness advocate dedicated to informing others about the patient voice and the lived experience of patients with chronic illness. Drawing from her personal journey with a rare neuromuscular disorder as well as her educational background in psychology, healthcare ethics, and medical social work, O’Connor works diligently to encourage a healthy appreciation for the patient perspective. Whether working on an individual, communal or global level, O’Connor provides her personal and professional expertise within the healthcare industry to educate, engage, and empower others with the intent to inspire greater awareness, productive dialogue and welcomed diversity. An innovative thinker, passionate leader, and progressive change-maker, O’Connor strives for a world that cultivates supportive spaces for the chronic illness community and recognizes the value that patients have to offer. Diagnosed with Myasthenia Gravis at the young age of 13, I have made it my personal mission in life to create positive impact and productive change within the healthcare industry. Throughout my chronic illness journey of 15+ years, my efforts have been focused in serving the chronic illness community in anyway that I can. An avid writer, I am recognized both nationally and internationally by several organizations dedicated to patient empowerment, education, and support. Additionally, I serve as a guest speaker for local and national organizations, collaborating with nonprofit agencies, academic institutions, and healthcare associations to promote awareness campaigns, advocacy efforts, and donor relations. Lastly, I act as an advisor for many nonprofit associations and healthcare organizations, providing input and intelligence for those looking to improve current practices and services. My illness may be characterized by weakness; but I am resilient, determined, and relentless in supporting the chronic illness community!

Location

Saint Louis, MO

Nominations

Advocating for Another Best Kept Secret

Mer is a beautiful person inside and out! Her profile is educational as well as inspirational. I love seeing her hard work and honest stories as I scroll through Instagram - it adds value to my day to see her journey!  — Madeline

Meridith relentlessly advocates for invisible disabilities. She is passionate, kind, and impactful in her advocacy.  — April

Meridith O'Connor, MSW

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