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World Multiple Sclerosis Day in Kazakhstan: The Eurasian Medical Association is starting a partnership with Merck and Sona-Pharm to improve the quality of MS patients care

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is the one of the most common disease of the central nervous system (CNS) that is characterized by inflammation, demyelination and degenerative changes. Most of MS patients are young people aged 20 – 40 years, and this diagnosis becomes the most common cause of disability among non-traumatic diseases for them. Faced with multiple sclerosis for the first time, they are often confused, depressed and not always able to accept this condition. The key event to support them is the annual Multiple Sclerosis Day, held in many countries. On May 28/2020, on the eve of World MS Day an online press-conference with the Eurasian Medical Association, Ostap Kupnovitsky and Roger Elia participation was held in Kazakhstan,. During the event these three sides (the Association, Sona-Pharm and Merck) have signed the Memorandum of Cooperation on development and improvement of diagnosiс and treatment of Multiple Sclerosis in Kazakhstan, and answered different questions on companies’ activities from journalists. “As a Merck partner in CIS and Ukraine, we are supporting the initiatives of patient and medical community for improvement patient’s life with MS. One of examples is opening of special healthcare offices (MS rooms) where patients with MS can receive consultative support around the clock; we consider it was a very important and timely solution that can be in demand not only in Kazakhstan, but also in other countries of the former Soviet Union. In addition, by concluding a tripartite cooperation agreement with the Eurasian Medical Association, we will be able to help more patients with MS to live a full life” –  said Ostap Kupnovitsky, General Manager of Sona-Pharm.   Later that day, patients with MS and neurologists teamed up with patients from other CIS countries and Ukraine to provide mutual support, as well as to raise public awareness of MS. They took part in an international online event involving experts of neurology area and rehabilitation, where they were able to exchange information on how they live with hope, create families and build careers. Now, in context of COVID-19 pandemic and self-isolation, creation of such events, bringing together people who live with a similar diagnosis on same platform is especially important. After all, patients and their relatives face similar problems and therefore can not only exchange experiences, but simply humanly support each other, understand that they are not alone in their problem. “Being one of the first who started developing solutions for multiple sclerosis treatment 20 years ago, we consider it as our duty to help patients with this disease – says Roger Elia, director of Merck Biopharma CIS. – Today people with this diagnosis with the personalised therapy can live a full life, make plans for the future, and create families as well. This is especially important for those who have been diagnosed with MS at a young age.”