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PHS Patient is Juvenile Arthritis March Honorary Chairperson

PHS kids are amazing, including Charles Dias, who is this year’s Honorary Chairperson of the Juvenile Arthritis March (JAM). For the sixth consecutive year, Charles and his family will walk in JAM at the Mall of America. This year’s event is March 5. JAM helps support the 6,000 kids in Minnesota who have arthritis.

Charles Dias, JAM honoree, juvenile arthritis

Top JAM fundraiser
Charles, who just celebrated his ninth birthday, has consistently been JAM’s top fundraiser.
Again this year, PHS Nutrition Specialist Janelle Peterson, RD, LD, CNSD, and her own sons, plus PHS Marketing and Sales Program Coordinator Dana Akerson will walk with Charles’ team, and PHS will sponsor his team of “Charlie’s Angels.”

Janelle says: “JAM is an excellent event. It’s great for younger kids to see older children who also have juvenile arthritis thriving and walking. All the funds raised go to camp scholarships, research and other programs to help kids like Charles thrive.”

Charles story
“When he was two years old, Charles had unexplained fevers, rashes, and joint pain, and was in and out of consciousness. He spent 37 days in the hospital,” Charles’ mom, Louise, recalls. “He was finally diagnosed with systematic Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, or JRA. We were shocked. Like other families, we had no idea a child could have arthritis.”

Charles is also orally averse, has Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease and several other conditions. PHS provides care for his feeding tube and other treatments.

For other children with juvenile arthritis, PHS IV Therapy nurses and Pharmacists work with physicians to manage pediatric arthritis. Care includes infusion steroid treatments, where a PHS nurse comes to the child’s home and provides therapy for the child while our on-site infusion pharmacy supplies steroid therapy.

charles dias, juvenile arthritis, jam“Through managed care, Charles is an active, energetic little boy. I love seeing him running around and playing. Helping care for him and joining his family for JAM has been pure joy,” Janelle says.

Click here for Charles and his family’s full story.

Do you participate in the JAM walk or know anyone who does? We’d love to hear your story. Feel like support Charles in his walk to fight against Juvenile Arthritis? Click here to support his team, Charlie’s Angels.

Originally published: January 21, 2011