On November 4, 2016, Celiac Disease Foundation was invited to present a live session of the Celiac Disease Patient Advocacy Program at the Center for Celiac Research and Treatment 20th Anniversary Celebration and Symposium at Massachusetts General Hospital. CDF CEO, Marilyn Geller, and Communications Manager, Talia Hassid, educated a packed room of people about patient-centered outcomes research. The CDF Patient Advocacy Program trains patients and caregivers to become partners in the research process. Included in the program is information about clinical and scientific research processes, how to ask research questions, and how to serve on research study committees. Additionally, we inform patient advocates about the latest in celiac disease research, how patient-centered outcomes research has impacted our healthcare system, and, most importantly, how patients and caregivers can have their voices heard in celiac disease research.

Following the session, attendees were privileged to hear from special guest speakers from the Celiac Research Program at Harvard Medical School, including Dr. Ciaran Kelly, Dr. Carlo Catassi, and CDF Medical Advisory Board member, Dr. Alessio Fasano. The presentations focused on the history of celiac disease, how it came to be recognized as a serious genetic autoimmune disease, and what the next 20 years will bring in celiac disease education, research, treatments, and a cure.

CDF is proud to have participated in the celebration and to have had the opportunity to honor Dr. Fasano for his groundbreaking work. We look forward to continuing to support the Center for Celiac Research and Treatment. We offer congratulations on twenty years of advances in celiac disease education, advocacy, and research, and sincere thanks to Founder, Dr. Fasano, for his unwavering support of Celiac Disease Foundation and the celiac disease community.