LONDON, June 9, 2016 /PRNewswire/ --
The opportunities and challenges of managing multiple sclerosis in countries across identified in an article published recently in European Neurological Review the peer-reviewed journal from touchNEUROLOGY. In this review, Patrick Vermersch et al, assert that despite recent therapeutic advances, there are many deficiencies in the management of multiple sclerosis (MS). Diagnostic and monitoring measures, guidelines, development of new treatments and best practice care are often suboptimal. These shortcomings were discussed at two MS multi-stakeholder colloquia that were convened in Brussels, Belgium in May 2014 and May 2015, and gathered experts from a range of different specialities to identify the key issues and propose means of tackling them. After considering all the testimony and discussion, the organising committee drew up a list of 10 calls to action, which included: increase awareness and understanding in the EU about the burden of MS; obtain better insights into the direct and indirect cost burden of MS; (re)define treatment goals and clinical study endpoints; develop new tools to better capture the total clinical burden of MS; develop a protocol to standardise magnetic resonance imaging (MRI); develop biomarkers of treatment response prediction and disability progression; integrate drug licensing and cost-effectiveness decision-making processes; develop separate European Medicines Agency guidelines for evaluating follow-on products of non-biological complex drugs and biologicals; implement a set of evidence-based standards of care and incentives to support people with MS to remain physically and mentally active. Addressing these ambitious calls to action requires cooperation from various health bodies and governments and some will require additional funding, but they are achievable and worthwhile. They would help minimise disease impact and would reduce disease progression and the consequent burden on people with MS, their caregivers, and on health budgets. These calls to action set out a strategy for future MS management and Vermersch et al believe they should be acted upon with urgency.
The full peer-reviewed, open-access article is available here:
Disclosure: Patrick Vermersch has received consulting fees and honoraria from Bayer Schering, Biogen Idec, Merck-Serono, Novartis, Teva, Genzyme-Sanofi, Almirall and Roche. He has also received research support from Bayer Schering, Biogen Idec, Merck-Serono, and Teva. Ralf Gold has received research support and speaker's honoraria from Bayer Schering, Biogen, Chugai, ELAN, Merck Serono, Novartis, Roche, Sanofi-Genzyme and Teva and consulting honoraria from ZLB Behring, Baxter and Talecris. Chris Holloway has received honoraria or consultation fees from Teva. Alex Rovira serves on scientific advisory boards for Biogen Idec, Novartis, Genzyme, and OLEA Medical, and on the editorial board of the American Journal of Neuroradiology and Neuroradiology. He has received speaker honoraria from Bayer, Genzyme, Sanofi-Aventis, Bracco, Merck-Serono, Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd, OLEA Medical, Stendhal, Novartis and Biogen Idec, and has research agreements with Siemens AG. Gavin Giovannoni has received personal compensation for participating on advisory boards in relation to clinical trial design, trial steering committees and data and safety monitoring committees from: Abbvie, Bayer Schering Healthcare, Biogen Idec, Canbex, Eisai, Elan, Fiveprime, Genzyme, Genentech, GSK, GW Pharma, Ironwood, Merck Serono, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche, Sanofi-Aventis, Synthon BV, Teva, UCB Pharma and Vertex Pharmaceuticals. Mondher Toumi has provided consul ting through Aix Marseille University and through Creativ- Ceutical to most companies engaged in commercialising MS products: scientific board contribution, presentation in scientific meeting, strategic consulting.
touchNEUROLOGY (a division of Touch Medical Media) publishesEuropean Neurological Review, a peer-reviewed, open access, bi-annual journal specialising in the publication of balanced and comprehensive review articles written by leading authorities to address the most important and salient developments in the field of neurology. The aim of these reviews is to break down the high science from 'data-rich' primary papers and provide practical advice and opinion on how this information can help physicians in the day to day clinical setting. Practice guidelines, symposium write-ups, case reports, and original research articles are also featured to promote discussion and learning amongst physicians, clinicians, researchers and related healthcare professionals.
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