World first! Four doctors recovering from MS presenting an OMS retreat

November 10, 2017

George Jelinek with Keryn Taylor Sam Gartland and Jonathan White

The next OMS Retreat in Australia starts on Monday 13 November at the Gawler Foundation in rural Victoria, Australia. It marks an extraordinary point in the evolution of the OMS Recovery Program.

Originally, from 2002, these live-in 5 day retreats were facilitated by Professor George Jelinek (pictured first from left), Founder of OMS. After many years, for a period of two years or so, they were jointly facilitated by Prof Jelinek and Dr Keryn Taylor (pictured second from left), a psychiatrist specializing in psycho-oncology at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne, who is also recovering from MS after many years on the OMS Program.

Now however, for the first time anywhere in the world, four doctors recovering from MS who have been following the OMS Program will be facilitating the retreat. Joining Drs Jelinek and Taylor will be Dr Sam Gartland and Dr Jonathan White (pictured third and fourth from left respectively).

Sam is a GP in New South Wales; he has previously helped facilitate retreats at the Gawler Foundation with both George and Keryn.

Joining them will be the newest facilitator, Dr Jonathan White, an obstetrician from the UK, who is flying out especially to be mentored in facilitation techniques, but also to present some of the sessions at the retreat.

It should give enormous hope to people with MS everywhere to see not only these medical professionals embrace the Program, but to be thriving!

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20 thoughts on ‘World first! Four doctors recovering from MS presenting an OMS retreat

  1. I attended twelve months ago the OMS retreat at the Gawler Foundation. A year later most of my symptoms have subsided if not gone completely by following this program which took a good six months before I felt any significant benefits. I champion this program and many friends and family have noticed the remarkable positive effect it has been on my wellbeing. I would love to attend this up coming event to help mentor others on the positive effects that this program offers. Unfortunately, I won’t be in the country but would look forward to future events where I may be able to contribute and encourage fellow sufferers of MS that there is hope and a recovery from OMS. Be well and stay well to all.
    Thank you to Ruth, for her support and help, and Ian for his foresight in championing the OMS program. I am eternally grateful for their support plus the the compassionate generosity of Robert and Mem Kirby.

  2. I only wish that attending was somehow feasible financially for me.
    Unfortunately these retreats are way out of the affordability of people who have had to give up there career due to MS (in my case, as an RN running a busy ED in an inner city Melbourne Hospital).
    Such a shame that we can’t all benefit, only those with $$$_

  3. I’m a clinical psychologist also with MS and doing OMS. If you need any psychological input let me know (I’m on LinkedIn and run a FB group – Low Stress MS).

    • Hi Sarah, thanks for getting in touch. That sounds fantastic – we will be in touch with you over email shortly. Kind regards, OMS team

    • Hi Rhind, we don’t currently have digital access to the retreats set up however we are exploring options to make the information from events and retreats more accessible to the global MS community. Warm wishes, OMS team

  4. Good to see Dr. Jonathan White attending. That will hopefully lead the way to a retreat experience coming to the UK at some point soon? The AMEX 2017 was a great event, thank you!

  5. Is there any retreat planned for the UK.? Especially in the North. I feel my daughter who has been following the programme for 5 months would benefit from support and more in depth education as we have been very much relying on online information from the society. The NHS has had very little to offer since she was diagnosed with PPMS . Thankyou for such positive advice. Your work is inspiring.

    • Hi Chris, thanks so much for reaching out to us. We are busy planning our event calendar for the next year and hope to have more information available soon. In terms of support, we do have a number of OMS Circles (support groups) throughout the UK which may be a good place for your daughter to meet others and get first-hand information from others on the program. You can see more about the Circles here:

    • Hi there, we do have some events and retreats planned for next year. We are busy finalizing the details and hope to announce them soon on the website and social media. Regards, OMS team

    • Hi Judim, we are hoping to have an event up North sometime next year – keep an eye out on the website for more details. Regards, OMS team

  6. Will there also be one in London? I think there would be huge demand, there are lots of patients at the National Hospital for Neurology that has a great team, as well as from the other hospitals.

    • Hi Sarah, we are planning a UK-based retreat soon although it is set to be in the Somerset area. Kind regards, OMS team

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