Presentation: How to Be Your Own Advocate
A passionate advocate for patient health, Terri Diaz is a founding member of GPAC-Global Patient Advocacy Coalition, facilitator of BIHS-Breast Implant Health Summit, and founder and administrator of Breast Implant Illness Florida Support Group. She also serves on the PEAC-Patient Engagement Advisory Committee as a Special Government Employee for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Terri's own 10-year debilitating illness due to adverse reactions to an implantable medical device she had placed in 2006 ultimately motivated her to become involved in patient safety advocacy and promoting informed consent. At the time of implanting, she was not informed about the possible side effects of breast implants. Terri's health greatly improved after her implants were removed in 2016.
Terri has testified several times at FDA hearings regarding patient safety. She has collaborated with industry, practitioners, and medical societies to develop solutions that improve patient-practitioner relationships. In collaboration with GPAC's co-founder, Robyn Towt, plastic surgeons, patient advocates, state and regional plastic surgeon societies, and the ASPS Government Relations team, she assisted in developing a patient decision checklist with the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). As part of Terri's advocacy, she continues to lobby local legislators for an informed consent bill regarding breast implants in Florida as well as the Medical Safety Device Act and Guardians Act.
By participating in the Breast Implant Health Summit, she has raised awareness among practitioners and the medical community, which has resulted in improved patient care.
Having over six years of advocacy experience, she has been sought out by multiple Florida news stations (WFTV, WPTV, and CBS4). Through sharing her personal story and promoting breast implant awareness, she has contributed to Busted Documentary, Explant Documentary, the ICIJ Implant Files, and Medtruth.
Through Terri's advocacy, she hopes to raise awareness among patients and the medical community to improve patient care. She is dedicated to serving the voiceless and making sure every patient receives all the information they need to make informed choices.