by Peter Damiri
Vice President of Programs and Services
MSAA Merges MRI Programs into the MRI Access Fund
For more than 12 years, MSAA has successfully operated two programs that provide magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) exams for individuals who need assistance to confirm a diagnosis of multiple sclerosis or track its disease progression. Through the expansion of new corporate support, MSAA has been able to combine the MRI Diagnostic and Institute programs into one service, as well as increase the number of clients served in 2015.
Although the name has changed to the MRI Access Fund, the program will operate in the same manner – assisting people who do not have adequate insurance coverage or the financial means necessary to acquire a cranial MRI. Supported by charitable contributions from EMD Serono and Pfizer, along with Genzyme, a Sanofi company, the MRI Access Fund will cover the remaining cost of a person’s co-insurance balance or pay for an MRI through contracted imaging centers for qualified candidates.
Program applicants must meet income requirements, receive approval from MSAA prior to having an MRI (no reimbursements will be given for previous MRIs), and cannot exceed one MSAA-funded MRI exam within a 24-month period. If you have discussed with your physician the need for an MRI to aid in diagnosing multiple sclerosis or evaluating disease progression and need assistance, please download the application at mymsaa.org or contact MSAA at (800) 532-7667 to receive a copy in the mail.
This Summer, Don’t Be Left Out in the Cold (Without Your Cooling Accessories!)
Once again, ‘ole man winter really packed a powerful punch with record snowfalls, bitter wind chills, and prolonged artic conditions. Although we’re slowly thawing out from his deep freeze, we want you to imagine that it is summertime right now! Why? As temperatures begin to rise, so do requests for MSAA’s Cooling Distribution Program. To avoid possible delays due to high demand, MSAA encourages you to apply now before the summer-cooling rush is upon us.
The MSAA Cooling Program offers a variety of ice-pack vests and accessories to help lessen heat sensitivity and allow people to spend time outdoors, enjoying family gatherings, gardening, and a variety of fun, summer activities. To help meet our client’s needs, cooling products also include smaller, lightweight vests that are easily hidden for discreet use and comfortable to wear, while at work or participating in your favorite exercise.
If you are interested in receiving cooling items and have not received products from MSAA within the past five years, please download the cooling application from mymsaa.org or request a mailed copy by calling (800) 532-7667, extension 130.
MSAA’s Library of Online Videos Reaches a Special Milestone
MSAA’s online educational video library, known as Multiple Sclerosis Information (MSi), recently reached a significant milestone by generating more than 100,000 views since the program’s inception in 2007! With 39 titles and growing, MSi offers a wide range of on-demand videos and archived webinars designed to bring knowledge and empowerment right into the privacy and comfort of a person’s home.
These award-winning videos feature top MS healthcare professionals providing valuable insights and updated information on the latest advances in MS, symptom-management techniques, exercise and wellness opportunities, and effective coping strategies. Other valuable program topics explore:
- the impact of MS on the family and personal relationships
- employment and disability issues
- the evolving world of health insurance coverage
- and many more “real-life” discussions to help people get the answers they need
We invite you to log onto mymsaa.org/videos to watch an MSi program to learn more about multiple sclerosis and effective strategies to help you better manage and improve your life today.