MS Organizations Join #MySupportHero Initiative to Help Patients Salute Those Who Care

MS Organizations Join #MySupportHero Initiative to Help Patients Salute Those Who Care

A number of multiple sclerosis organizations have joined Biogen in the second year of the #MySupportHero initiative.

The social media campaign is a way for people with multiple sclerosis (MS)  to thank those who give them the care,  encouragement, attention, and strength they need. The initiative runs through the end of March, which is MS Awareness Month.

Organizations taking part in the initiative include MSWorldMS Views and NewsCan Do MS and MS Focus: the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation. The thank-yous are aimed at family, friends, healthcare professionals, and advocacy communities.

MS is a chronic, unpredictable disease of the central nervous system,, which consists of the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. There are a multitude of MS symptoms, including blurred vision, loss of balance, poor coordination, slurred speech, tremors, numbness, extreme fatigue, problems with memory and concentration, paralysis, and blindness. Because the disease is so daunting, encouragement and emotional support is important to those who have it.

“I was diagnosed with MS eight years ago, and my wife has been my pillar of strength through it all,” Dan Melfi, a retired director of airport operations who has participated in Can Do MS programs, said in a news release. “She is my protector and hero, keeping me positive and always thinking about my needs. #MySupportHero allows us to show our loved ones gratitude for all that they do — no matter how big or small.”

Those living with MS can participate by:

  • Using the #MySupportHero hashtag on social media to express their thanks.
  • Retweeting @MSWorld Inc and @BiogenMS posts that include the program’s virtual orange flower, both to symbolize MS awareness and as a gesture of appreciation.
  • Sharing posts on MSWorld’s Facebook or Pinterest pages, including the virtual orange flower, sending a personalized email message or requesting a #MySupportHero postcard.

“I believe in the power of community to support people living with MS to gain confidence and motivation to overcome the daily challenges,” Kathleen Wilson, founding president and CEO of MSWorld, said. “Last year’s #MySupportHero reached thousands of people who honored their support partners. Showing gratitude for our heroes empowers all of us to keep moving forward. This March, we want to extend #MySupportHero to foster a stronger sense of community, and inspire people to thank their support heroes in their day-to-day lives while growing a virtual field of #MySupportHero flowers online.”

“Love is the foundation that builds our community. #MySupportHero is an inspired way to share that love,” Wilson added.

MSWorld is one of the largest patient-run MS organizations worldwide, providing support and information to people living with the disease. The organization offers chat rooms, message boards, a wellness center, a creative center, a resource center, a conference center and an arcade, along with social networking connections on Facebook and Twitter.

“Working together with MS patient organizations, we are dedicated to making a difference in the lives of people affected by MS,” said Mike Krzan, vice president of patient services at Biogen. “Through #MySupportHero, we’re proud to recognize the invaluable role of support partners, and build on our commitment to positively impact the community with comprehensive MS support and programs.”

Biogen is a biotechnology company with a leading portfolio of MS therapies. It is at the forefront of research into new medicines for neurological conditions and rare genetic disorders.

Patrícia holds her PhD in Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases from the Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden, The Netherlands. She has studied Applied Biology at Universidade do Minho and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Instituto de Medicina Molecular in Lisbon, Portugal. Her work has been focused on molecular genetic traits of infectious agents such as viruses and parasites.
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Patrícia holds her PhD in Medical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases from the Leiden University Medical Center in Leiden, The Netherlands. She has studied Applied Biology at Universidade do Minho and was a postdoctoral research fellow at Instituto de Medicina Molecular in Lisbon, Portugal. Her work has been focused on molecular genetic traits of infectious agents such as viruses and parasites.
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