Volume 2, Number 1 ----- Spring/Summer 1999
Genevieve Joseph is no stranger to clinical trials. Before joining the PLCO study, she enrolled in the Women's Health Initiative (WHI), a very large trial examining how to prevent cancer, heart disease, and bone fractures in women. Her experience with the WHI had been so positive that when she received information in the mail about PLCO at Henry Ford last June, she immediately decided to become a study participant
She has learned a lot about the inside of the body and is generous in sharing this information with her friends and family while encouraging them to join PLCO. Before joining the study, Genevieve paid little attention to her own health because she was too busy taking care of eight children and 14 grandchildren. "I feel good about being in PLCO," said Genevieve. "I know I am helping protect the health of my children and grandchildren."
Since her retirement five years ago, Genevieve has applied her professional accounting skills to international volunteer work. She and her husband, Leo, a retired agricultural professional, traveled to Latvia, Romania, and Armenia through a program sponsored by the U.S. Government to help communities in developing countries build private agribusinesses. Closer to home, Genevieve is also an active volunteer on several advisory boards.
Genevieve has learned more than just human physiology from the study. "My opinion of the medical profession has changed since joining PLCO," said Genevieve. "The level of professionalism and commitment I have observed in clinic staff is impressive. I think the PLCO is just wonderful and we are so lucky to have the chance to be a part of it."
David and JoAnn Boldt have been PLCO participants at the University of Minnesota for several years. After observing JoAnn's experiences with the trial when she joined more than four years ago, her husband, David, decided to join. Explaining his motivation, David said, "My father died of lung cancer and my grandfather had prostate cancer, so I know I have these cancers in my family. I am also at increased risk due to exposure to chemicals we use in the funeral services industry.
The Boldts are enjoying David's recent retirement from their family-run funeral services business. "We are snowbirds," explained David. "We drive our RV 1,500 miles to Florida for 10 weeks in the winter. We don't leave Minnesota until the middle of January, though, because we wouldn't want to miss the whole winter in Minnesota. We really like a good snowstorm!" The Boldts also enjoy golfing, fishing, and traveling during the summer.
David and JoAnn encourage their friends and family members to join PLCO. "The facility at Minnesota is excellent and they are very flexible with scheduling," said David. "A lot of people may be afraid of the screening exams. You really shouldn't have any hesitation to join. If you get chosen for the screening group, the exams are not a big deal because the clinic staff is so skilled."
The Boldts are very enthusiasitic about the PLCO trial. As they explained, "Participation in PLCO is great for us, for the future health of our family, and it is great for the research project."