For those who are chasing the cure, it’s a terrifying premise you’ve heard stories about, but pray you’ll never face: a debilitating disease, mounting medical bills, and specialists who can’t figure out the cause. It’s this premise, and the possibility of finding hope for those trapped in this life, behind a new television show which debuts on both TNT and TBS August 8, at 9pm ET/6pm PT.
Chasing the Cure
Chasing the Cure is a 10-episode live medical show that features sufferers of unidentified ailments pursuing answers via a community of doctors, patients, and viewers. A recurring panel of top, accredited doctors and invited medical experts from across the country will meet with patients and discuss potential diagnoses, as well as speak with audiences at home, who will have the ability to support one another and share their own experiences.
The show’s trailer demonstrates both the hope and the heartache of Chasing the Cure’s premise, previewing the stories of various people experiencing a variety of ailments. One woman named Charlie describes receiving multiple different diagnoses for symptoms no one can fully explain to her. She says, “If this show and these doctors can’t help me find what’s wrong, then what else is there?”
“Being able to get information to patients that don’t have access to care, that’s the power of crowdsourcing to give a diagnosis,” said Interventional Cardiologist Sheila Sahini, MD.
Award-winning journalist Ann Curry, a former NBC News Network anchor and international correspondent, has reported on conflicts and humanitarian crises all over the world, and is now turning her attention to these unexplained stories of people desperate for answers. Turner and Lionsgate TV are partnered on this series featuring Curry as anchor and patient advocate, reporting true stories of medical enigmas and helping patients find the answers they so desperately seek.
In addition to live medical advice from experts, the series includes a range of other segments, from live medical procedures to field pieces, and is designed to unleash the power of global crowdsourcing for those who, like one of the women featured in the show’s trailer, have been to dozens of medical professionals, seeking answers but finding none.
“We are not their doctors,” Curry told the Television Critics Association press tour in July, according to The Wrap. “They have their own medical doctors, or primary care physicians. If they don’t have a doctor, we have to sort of deal with that challenge. But essentially what they’re getting is a panel of experts for a problem that they can’t resolve. And they can take their advice or not. They have come to us asking for help…We’re dealing with people who are saying ‘I can’t find any answers. I need some help.’ And we’re exposing them to the highest level of doctors.”
Chasing the Cure Crowdsources Hope
Every week on the live broadcast which airs simultaneously on TNT and TBS, patients battling puzzling ailments meet with a panel of top doctors who work to help solve their cases ranging from the surprising and odd, to the most uplifting and joyful, to cases that are a race against the clock under heartbreaking life or death circumstances. Simultaneously, viewers will be able to interact with the show across social media pages, a Facebook group, and ChasingTheCureLive.com.
The show’s website, which is already live, allows visitors to submit their own cases and engage with case files of upcoming patients featured on the broadcast. The site will also contain extensive video and other editorial content and allow viewers at home to interact with one another about medical issues.
“When we hear compelling stories about people in need, we often want to help, we want to be someone’s hero,” Curry says. “Chasing the Cure aims to unleash this good in us, at a time when people yearn for it, by making groundbreaking connections, democratizing data, and giving everyday people a chance to be heard. Connections help us. They can even save a life.”
Beyond the people featured on the show, the website will be a place for crowdsourced potential solutions as well. People dealing with chronic, unexplained symptoms have already flooded the site, seeking the advice of experts and the community at large, as they look for answers to their unexplained illnesses.
Curry is a legendary journalist who has contributed groundbreaking journalism on climate change, genocide, the Aids epidemic, nuclear tensions and poverty, and has conducted a long list of exclusive and news breaking interviews, including with world leaders. Curry has won seven national news Emmys among numerous other journalism awards and humanitarian awards from Refugees International, Americares, Save the Children, and the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which awarded her a Medal of Valor, for her dedication to reporting about genocide.
Veteran journalist Kim Bondy serves as showrunner and executive producer of this ten 90-minute episode project from Lionsgate Television, production companies B-17 Entertainment, and Motiv8 Media.