“The moment when a young person faces the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis (MS) is painful, internal peace and stability is replaced by fear and uncertainty, and the stream of consciousness is directed to the final outcome of this disease. It is even more painful to know that the medications do exist, but in our Serbia, it is difficult to reach the therapy – only 1 out of 10 people with this diagnosis has the access to the therapy” – this is how those from newly established MS Serbian Platform start their story.
The reason of the gathering of young people with the diagnosis of MS, their families and volunteers as well as the members of MS Serbian Platform is rising awareness about multiple sclerosis, significance of the adequate therapy but primarily the availability of the medications for the patients in order to eliminate the fear of uncertain future, bring back hope, optimism and happiness for the establishment of family, planning of future and normal life.
What is MS?
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is an autoimmune disease of central nervous system which hits young people aged 20 to 40. That is the period of life when people are finishing their education, find their jobs and found their families. All of these important steps in life are threatened by this neurodegenerative disease which is the leading cause of disability among young people. The patients, their families and doctors can only watch the disease progress, decrease the quality of life and lead to disability, unless it is treated.
If we compare the treatment in Serbia with the treatment in other countries…
In many countries in the region, the situation with the treatment of this disease is significantly better – there is a wider range of medications and more patients are treated. There are up to 14 different original medications which can enable quality life, without limitations.
Unfortunately, in Serbia, those rare ones who have therapy can only use the medications for initial, milder forms of multiple sclerosis. There are no high-efficient medications for active and aggressive forms of the disease. Timely application of the therapy stops the disease, and its prolongation enables the possibility for worsening, accumulation of damage and permanent loss of large number of nerve fibre which can lead to the loss of different basic life functions.
What are the activities of MS Serbian Platform?
MS Serbian Platform made a website and profiles on social networks: Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. The idea is to gather everyone who is interested in cooperation: the state, media, associations, companies, doctors and the public – to join the fight for raising awareness. The right to health of young people is something that should be a priority.