Advocacy & Awareness for Immune Disorders Association (AAIDA)


Urgent Care vs ER: What to Know and When to Go

March 1st, 2022

AAIDA hosted Archie Sims, MSN, FNP-C of Charlotte N.C,  for our 3rd educational webinar during 2022.

Archie will discuss the following:

  • Hospital Emergency Room (ER): The basics
  • Differences in Urgent Care and ER and the pros and cons of each
  • Bonus: Retail health clinics
  • Direction on where you can go with what symptoms
  • What to expect at each type of facility

Archie Sims, MS, FNP-C is originally from Florence, SC and moved to Charlotte N.C in the fall of 2019. Archie has been a licensed Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP) since 2017, initially working as a hospitalist in Sumter, S.C before transitioning to retail health in 2018. Prior to obtaining his FNP at Francis Marion University, Archie worked in the MICU and on the ICU float team in Florence. While at Francis Marion University, he enjoyed teaching clinicals to undergraduate nursing students and participating in research opportunities. Archie has also worked in the home setting since 2020 and administering IVIG and SCIG to patients. This has given him a new appreciation for those living with immunocompromised conditions.

Since working in retail health, Archie realized many people aren’t fully aware of their options when it comes to acute medical care. He hopes to address this and give people a better understanding of where to go when they have an urgent medical need.

Health Benefits of Horticulture Therapy

February 17th, 2022

AAIDA hosted certified Horticulture Therapist and Professional Counselor, Bobbie Mabe, MA, HT, of Charlotte N.C, for our 2nd educational webinar of 2022!

Bobbie will discuss the following during her presentation:

  • What is horticulture therapy 
  • How horticulture therapy can benefit patients living with chronic & acute illness
  • Simple ways to become involved in horticulture therapy to aid in the integrative healing process
  • Health benefits of horticulture therapy & science behind the facts

Bobbie Mabe holds an MA in Professional Counseling from Argosy University in Chicago I.L and certification as a Horticulture Therapist from the Horticulture Therapy Institute in Boulder, C.O. Bobbie is the owner of Growth Through Gardening, which offers horticultural therapy programming that is tailored around the belief that everyone benefits from interaction with nature and that horticultural therapy can be used to meet goals that range from the most clinical to the most basic.  Bobbie works with clients of all age groups ranging from pre-school, adolescence, adults and seniors. With her background, education and training, Bobbie wanted to cultivate and enrich her clients lives through nature and hands-on learning experiences in order to help clients heal their entire self, both physically and emotionally.

What is Horticulture Therapy?

The practice of horticultural therapy uses plants, gardens, and nature-based activities to promote well-being. Its practice is an effective, evidence-based therapeutic modality similar to music, art, recreation and other experiential therapies. Horticultural therapists assess emotional well-being, social functioning, communication abilities, cognitive and physical abilities, and horticultural interest. 

Living Well With Lupus: A Holistic Approach

January 25th, 2022

AAIDA will host Tanya Freirich, MS, RD, CDN, CDCES to kick off our webinar series for 2022! 

Tanya will discuss the following:

  • Quick overview of Lupus
  • Basic nutrition and healthy eating for patients
  • Review of diets focused on autoimmunity and up-to-date information 
  • Controlling Lupus flares with nutritional and lifestyle changes

Tanya Freirich is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist based near Charlotte, N.C.  She is the owner of a virtual private practice (The Lupus Dietitian) that primarily serves people with Lupus but also helps others living with immune conditions to balance their diet and healthy eating habits.

Tanya Freirich completed her Bachelor’s degree and Master’s degree in Clinical Nutrition from New York University. Following graduation, she worked at New York Presbyterian Hospital in clinical nutrition before moving to outpatient nutrition counseling. With more than a decade of experience in nutrition, Tanya Freirich is well-versed in nutrition interventions for many diseases and conditions.  She is passionate about educating and collaborating with clients to find their personal path to health.  For clients with Lupus, she helps them regain control of their chronic illness, from a nutritional standpoint, and make dietary and lifestyle changes. This is helpful to reduce and eliminating flares, symptoms and side effects.  In addition to 1:1 nutrition counseling, Tanya enjoys speaking to Lupus support groups and will be starting group wellness programs in the coming months.  

Understanding IVIG

November 3, 2021

NEOMEDS’s Student Association of Speciality Pharmacy (SASP) & AAIDA have partnered to bring you this special webinar that is geared towards the speciality pharmacy student. Guest speaker, Michael Rigas, PharmD, will discuss major topics around intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) and the conditions it’s used to treat to help students gain better understanding of its use and pharmacological properties. Following his presentation, Dr. Rigas will conduct a live Q&A session with attendees.

Hereditary Angioedema: Triumphs of Medical Progress

July 14th, 2021

AAIDA hosted Doug Johnston, DO, FACAAI, FAAAAI, of Charlotte N.C,  for our 9th educational webinar during 2021.

Dr. Johnston will discuss the following during his presentation:

  • Understanding the mechanism of swelling in Hereditary Angioedema (HAE)
  • Review the burden of illness in patients with HAE 
  • Discuss current treatment options 

Douglas T. Johnston is an allergist/clinical immunologist at Carolina Asthma & Allergy Center in Charlotte, N.C and an Assistant Professor at Edward Via School of Osteopathic Medicine in Spartanburg, S.C. Dr. Johnston received his medical degree from the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine in Old Westbury, N.Y and  completed his residency in internal medicine at NYU Long Island Hospital (formerly Winthrop University Hospital) in Mineola, N.Y. Dr. Johnston then completed a fellowship in allergy/immunology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Dr. Johnston has served as chair of the Allergic Skin Disease Committee and is the current chair of the Urticaria/Angioedema subcommittee of the AAAAI. He has served as a principal investigator for many HAE therapeutics used today and an author of over 50 publications on angioedema. He has been activity involved with the education of children with HAE in collaboration with the HAEA and continues to learn from his patients each day.