Challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic can be even more stressful and overwhelming for people living with chronic illnesses. The Multiple Sclerosis Association of America (MSAA) offers accurate, up-to-date information, and resources during this time, according to a news release.
Webinars about COVID-19 and Multiple Sclerosis
- Streamed live on Monday, May 11, 2020, MSAA’s fourth program in its ongoing series of webinars addressing the COVID-19 pandemic features MSAA’s Chief Medical Officer Barry Hendin, MD, and the Chair of MSAA’s Healthcare Advisory Council Carrie Hersh, DO, MSc. These top two professionals provide the latest updates and insights on the coronavirus and its impact on multiple sclerosis. MSAA will also be hosting a fifth program about COVID-19 and MS with Dr. Hendin and Dr. Hersh on Monday, June 8, 2020.
- As reported in the news, the effects of COVID-19 in the United States has disproportionately impacted the health of racial and ethnic minority populations, especially within the African-American and Hispanic communities. Recognizing the need to address this critically important and urgent health issue, MSAA streamed a live webinar about health disparities in the MS community on Thursday, May 14, 2020, featuring MS expert neurologist Mitzi Joi Williams, MD.
MSAA provides a toll-free Helpline that allows individuals with MS, family members, care partners, and friends to speak directly with one of MSAA’s experienced Client Services Specialists. These trained and compassionate individuals have a social services and/or counseling background. However, please note that our Client Services Specialists are not trained medical professionals – any questions related to your medical care should be shared with your physician and clinical care team.
- Call (800) 532-7667, extension 154. Helpline hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 AM to 8:00 PM, EDT.
- Email MSquestions@mymsaa.org.
- Chat live via your computer through the online chat feature.
My MSAA Community is a free, peer-to-peer online forum for individuals with MS, their families, and their care partners to share information, stories, and experiences with multiple sclerosis. For people looking for a way to pass the time, put a smile on their face, or simply connect with someone who understands what they are going through, My MSAA Community could be a place to digitally interact with others during this isolating time, per the release.
Updates to MSAA’s Program Requirements
MSAA has made several revisions to the MRI Access Fund as well as to its Cooling and Equipment Distribution programs. Each of these three programs requires income eligibility from the applicant’s most recently filed income tax form.
Recognizing the immediate financial crisis many families are now experiencing, MSAA has added a COVID-19 economic hardship statement to all three programs to account for this sudden need. Also, depending on the program, certain application documents are now optional if individuals cannot connect with their physician due to stay-at-home restrictions.
For more information about the resources that are available, visit Multiple Sclerosis Association of America.
[Source(s): Multiple Sclerosis Association of America, PR Newswire]