Of course we’re proud of our fellow UK-based PAs, but we also wanted to share a unique story from across the pond in the US. We’re flying the flag for all PAs, regardless of location, and Hayley’s accomplishments will make us all proud.
At the age of 10, Hayley Arceneaux received a life-changing diagnosis of osteosarcoma. After receiving treatment at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee, Hayley was given a titanium rod as part of her treatment to replace the missing bone in her left leg.
After successful treatment, Hayley grew up to become a Physician Assistant, eventually accepting her dream job to work at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital where she had been a patient herself.
Multibillionaire businessman Jared Isaacman worked with SpaceX to plan an all-civilian mission to space. The mission was created to encourage people all over the world to pursue their aspirations and push the boundaries of what is feasible as well as to generate awareness and money for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. And, amazingly, Hayley was selected to take part.
The three-day mission had a crew of four people – Jared Isaacman, Hayley Arceneaux, Chris Sembroski, and Dr. Sian Proctor – and started on 15 September, 2021.
During the mission, the crew orbited the Earth for three days, conducted scientific experiments, and communicated with patients at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The mission was hailed as a historic moment in the democratisation of space exploration.
The trip was a big success, raising more than $200 million for St. Jude’s Hospital, and is now the subject of an excellent docuseries on Netflix. Hayley has appeared in an episode of the Physician Associate Podcast to discuss her wild ride (which is also the title of her book).