Hear Pro Basketball Player Kevin Love’s Perspective on the Importance of Mental Well-Being – Cleveland Clinic Newsroom

Kevin Love, Cleveland Cavaliers professional basketball player and founder of the Kevin Love Fund, will join HIMSS and the Cleveland Clinic as a speaker on 11NS Annual Patient Experience: Empathy and Innovation Digital Summit May 12-13, 2021.

In addition to his athletic accolades—including five NBA All-Star picks, an NBA Championship in 2016, an Olympic gold medal in 2012, and the Basketball World Championships in 2010—Love has become a public figure for his work to help normalize A conversation about mental health.

After a panic attack during an NBA game in 2017, Low decided to share his battle with anxiety and depression in an article he wrote for The Players’ Tribune. Love quickly developed into a public speaker for mental health awareness among athletes. “I was nervous about how I would be received. There are a lot of people dealing with anxiety disorder, depression, or mental health issues across the board. Having this community and being vulnerable allowed me to take the evolution in my life. Being able to talk about that has been a treat for me as well. Cleveland Clinic CEO and President, Kevin Love, Tom Mihaljevich, MD, explained during the Ideas for Tomorrow health system virtual forum last June.

Continuing his advocacy in the field, in 2018, he founded the Kevin Love Fund, dedicated to inspiring people to live healthier lives while providing the tools to achieve physical and emotional well-being. Since then, Love’s work in mental health awareness has been recognized worldwide. Received a Change Maker Award by the Child Mind Institute, an NBA Cares Assist Award, an Arthur Ashe Courage Award at 2020 ESPYS, and a finalist for the Muhammad Ali Sports Humanitarian Award for his advocacy and outreach efforts.

Adrienne Boissy, MD, MA, Cleveland Clinic’s Chief Experience Officer and co-chair of the Patient Experience Summit stresses the importance of Love’s invitation. “Especially these days, everyone faces extraordinary challenges, and many suffer – we see them every day in the faces of our colleagues, friends, caregivers and patients. But even worse is when we are isolated in our pain. What Kevin has done is extraordinary. Talking to everyone who listens. It normalizes the anxiety, fear, and depression that many feel, and reminds people that they are not alone. Just checking in each other can be a great first step.”

A large portion of the patient experience summit audience is made up of caregivers (doctors, nurses, etc.) who have had a difficult year and are facing burnout, depression, and anxiety. “It is important to understand the effects of loneliness on your body, mind, and overall health over time,” says Kelly Hancock, DNP, RN, NE-BC, FAAN, Cleveland Clinic’s chief care officer. Kevin has become an undeniable force in expanding the public conversation. About mental well-being, which has never been more important than it is now because we all struggle with some level of isolation and uncertainty during COVID-19.”

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