Wednesday, March 28, was the very first annual Progressive MS Day – at least, it was in parts of the USA.
Progressive MS Day is a new day of awareness initiated by pharmaceutical company Genentech in partnership with the MS advocacy community. Together, they aim to use the day to support and acknowledge those living with progressive forms of MS.
Genentech says: “This annual day offers an opportunity for people affected by MS, patient advocates, governments and industry to show their support and share available resources, programs and services for people living with progressive forms of MS.
“It is also an opportunity to call for more research to better understand the underlying biology of the disease, to discover and develop new therapeutic options, and to advance care and reduce disability.”
As someone who lives with secondary progressive MS (SPMS), I am delighted with the new day. I’d say that everyone in the progressive community deserves and needs support – and new treatments for both primary and secondary types.
Time to go international
The one issue I have is that the first Progressive MS Day appears to have only been recognised by various states in the USA. Certainly, living in Europe, I almost missed it. Our challenge, now, must be to expand Progressive MS Day not only throughout the US but also around the world. We need to make it truly international.
That’s where the International Progressive MS Alliance could come in. The alliance now includes 16 MS organisations, all working together to speed up treatments for progressive MS. It seems to be the ideal body to get on board and spread the special day worldwide.
Let’s hope that, by next year, progressive MS Day is transformed into a worldwide event.
As far as yesterday was concerned, people were urged to get involved with #ProgressiveMSDay.
Anyone who lives with a progressive form of MS, or supports someone with the disease, was welcome to get involved in Progressive MS Day. One suggestions included telling family, friends and the MS communities they belong to about the day. Another idea was to join the conversation on social media by sharing their own stories of perseverance and hope using the official hashtag: #ProgressiveMSDay.
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50shadesofsun.com is the personal website of Ian Franks, a freelance medical writer and editor for various health information sites. He enjoyed a successful career as a journalist, from reporter to editor in the print media. He gained a Journalist of the Year award in his native UK. Ian received a diagnosis of MS in 2002 and now lives in the south of Spain. He uses a wheelchair and advocates on mobility and accessibility issues.
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Note: Health-related information available on 50shadesofsun website is for your general knowledge only. It is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for specific medical conditions. I am not a doctor and cannot and do not give you medical advice. You should seek prompt medical care for any specific health issues. Also, consult a doctor before starting a new diet or exercise programme. Any opinions expressed are purely my own unless otherwise stated.