Representatives from a multiple sclerosis charity held a reception at the House of Commons to raise awareness of its work.
Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis (OMS) launched a new campaign video at the event on Tuesday October 15.
The charity’s chairwoman, Linda Bloom, gave an inspiring speech about her personal MS story and the creation of the charity.
She was accompanied by her husband, Tony Bloom, who is chairman of Brighton and Hove Albion Football Club.
“We want every person, newly diagnosed with MS, to be aware of the OMS programme,” she said.
“We aim to give them some realistic hope when they may have none and we want to fuel them with knowledge about how they can give themselves the best chance to get better or even recover from MS, like myself.”
She applauded recent ‘campaigning for accelerated research’ into MS treatments and emphasised her ‘strong belief’ in the importance of OMS’ programme for living well with the condition.
“We know, from rigorously-researched medical evidence, that overcoming MS is possible now and we want to share that hope with as many people as possible.” she said.
The charity’s work was praised by Caroline Clarke, group chief executive of Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust, a trustee of the charity who lives with MS and follows the charity’s seven-step programme.
“The NHS Long Term plan, published in January this year, focuses on health promotion, well-being and social prescribing which is absolutely in line with what the OMS programme is about - a healthy diet, exercise, vitamin supplements and stress reduction,” she said.
“The work of the charity is so important for people with MS, and for the NHS. We need to reach more people and to reach them early - ideally when they are diagnosed - so they can be helped early in their journey and avoid some, if not all, of the debilitating symptoms that come with MS.”
The OMS programme is a seven-step guide provided by the charity to assist people living with MS. It gives advice on how to manage the condition through lifestyle changes. More details on the programme can be found here