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MS Awareness Week March 2-8

Mar 02, 2009

MOVE IT! Join the Movement to End Multiple Sclerosis Now – MS Awareness Week March 2-8, 2009


MS Awareness Week March 2 – 8 is the time for the nation to go orange and Move It to end multiple sclerosis, a disease where someone is newly diagnosed each hour. Supported by a Congressional Resolution, this year MS Awareness Week and the state of MS research aptly coincide: Move It to create a world free of MS. 

Research Moving People with MS Forward with Their Lives

This is a watershed year in MS research with more than a dozen new therapies moving through the MS pipeline including the first two oral disease modifying drugs and the first symptom management drug that improves walking;

  • Exciting new research is also underway into Vitamin D and MS which is revealing an ever stronger tie between susceptibility to MS and reduced levels of Vitamin D;
  • Recent discoveries of new genes that make people susceptible to MS are providing clues to stopping and preventing the disease
  • The six Pediatric MS Centers established across the country offer the potential for finding the cause of MS by studying children with the disease, who could still harbor clues to what caused their MS because the environmental triggers may still be present.

With these pending breakthroughs on the horizon, people with MS have a future to look forward to rather than a past to look back upon.

A Week for Millions of People Impacted By MS to Move It and Come Together In Support of the MS Movement

  • Phil Keoghan, host of CBS’s The Amazing Race, will Move It on Thursday, March 5 in Times Square when he sets up a cycle-thon training ride for his upcoming bike ride across America that will raise awareness for the Society’s Bike MS ride series;
  • People across the country are volunteering to help raise funds and awareness to end MS by registering for Walk MS, Bike MS, and joining grass roots activist teams to advocate for health care reform;
  • Crowds of volunteers and staff from the Society are “taking over” high-traffic/high visibility sites such as Rockefeller Plaza across the country for “now-you-see-it, now-you-don’t” Move It stunts; a “Join the Movement bus” tour will roll across AL; movement marathons including stair climbs are occurring in Chicago and New York, cycle-thons in MI and CA, and a mud-run in Florida, all designed to bring awareness of the impact of MS;
  • Buildings including the Empire State building and city fountains are going orange; 3,000 orange pinwheels representing the people with MS in Maine will be spread out across a well-known field;
  • Teri Garr recorded Move It PSAs are now playing nationwide;
  • and orange bracelets, bumper stickers, shirts and caps will be the dress du jour throughout the week.

MS Activists are Moving It to Improve Health Care for People with MS

  • Health Care Reform, the Society created a set of National Health Care Reform Principles that map out and address the needs of people with MS and other chronic diseases or disabilities which have been submitted to Congress for review and requested inclusion in the upcoming health care reform legislation.
  • Research Funding in the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs, MS activists have already secured $5 million for an MS research program. This funding will help all those living with MS and will examine potential environmental risks that might explain the possible link between combat service and an increased incidence of MS. They are now seeking an additional $15 million appropriation.
  • Establishment of Disease Registries for MS Disease, Currently, no accurate estimates are available to help better understand the complexities of the MS population. MS activists are seeking the establishment of a permanent national MS registry at the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to measure the incidence and prevalence of MS in the U.S.

Move It Online and Be a Part of the Movement

To learn more about MS Awareness Week and what you can do to be a part of the MS movement, visit our MS Awareness Week page. You will find profiles of others who are “moving it,” an online toolkit with downloadable buttons, banners, badges and more for social network pages; and the Society’s YouTube “Move It” channel where you can share your own move it stories.

Corporate partners Moving It to End MS

Committed corporate partners who are supporting MS Awareness Week and the thousands of volunteers in the Move It campaign are:

  • Biogen Idec
  • Clear Channel Communications, Inc
  • Developers Diversified
  • Genentech/Biogen Idec
  • EMD Serono
  • Teva Neuroscience
  • The Vitamin Shoppe
  • Westfield Shopping Centers

“MS Awareness Week is the perfect time to Move It to end MS,” said Joyce Nelson, President and CEO of the National MS Society. “It is also the ideal time to recognize the millions of individuals who are already a part of the movement and each day make a difference in the lives of people who have MS.”

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