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Mary Glossop (She/Her/Hers)

State: Ohio

Chronic Conditions: Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Panic Disorder

My chronic journey started about six years ago when I was diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), bleeding in my stomach, and acute sensitivities to gluten and dairy. After many costly lifestyle changes, medications, and procedures, I have achieved almost full remission from my symptoms. Occasionally, however, I still have flare-ups due to my ongoing battle with panic disorder (PD) and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), which started when I was around twelve years old. Although I have faced many obstacles because of my disabilities, I firmly believe that it has made me a stronger person and ignited the passion I have for giving back to my community. With today's state of public health, there is no better time to advocate for a more equitable future.

I advocate because healthcare discrimination against chronically ill patients is still prevalent. I want to ensure that people with disabilities receive fair treatment ⁠— especially regarding the costs of medications and other procedures. No patient should choose between this and other essentials such as food and housing. As an educator for the past three years, I also want to support students who seek accommodations so they can live a full life and not feel socially isolated. This is something I faced for many years and is something I strive to change one small step at a time. Overall, there may be a lot of work to do in this advocacy realm, but I want to use my platforms to uplift my community and make it more inclusive.

In June 2022, I was one of four undergraduate recipients for the Salix Pharmaceuticals Gastrointestinal Health Scholarships to recognize my advocacy efforts.