EMD Serono Launches Community-Based Program to Advance Understanding of the Impact of Multiple Sclerosis on Patients and Caregivers
- MS On My Mind is part of the company's #MSInsideOut global campaign, aimed at providing a deeper understanding of MS around the world
- Renowned artist, MS patient and advocate Lydia Emily Archibald will bring individuals' experiences with MS to life via art at MSIsOnMyMind.com
- EMD Serono will support the MS community and advocacy organizations in addressing needs identified by the initiative

ROCKLAND, Mass., Oct. 31, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- EMD Serono, the biopharmaceutical business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, in the U.S. and Canada, announces the launch of MS On My Mind (MSOMM), a new initiative to raise awareness of the emotional toll and multi-faceted impact MS has on patients and their caregivers.

(PRNewsfoto/EMD Serono)

MSOMM encourages people living with MS to authentically reveal the reality of their lives by visiting MSIsOnMyMind.com to complete the sentence, "MS is on my mind when _______."  These real-life experiences of gratitude or struggle, of accomplishment or challenge can be shared through short sentences, pictures and GIFs or templated responses provided on the website.

The content shared by the MS community will serve as inspiration for nationally-renowned artist and MSOMM creative director Lydia Emily (Lydia Emily Archibald), who was diagnosed with MS in 2014, to create thought-provoking artwork, illustrating the personal impact on people with the condition.

"MS is on my mind when I need to strap paintbrushes to my hands in order to paint, but I am grateful that I can still continue doing what I love," said Ms. Archibald. "That's why I'm encouraging the MS community to share their experiences – whether it's times when they are celebrating successes or dealing with the challenges of the disease. I'll use the submissions we receive as inspiration for artwork that reflects the many ways MS impacts individuals."

In 2019, as part of the initiative's second phase, EMD Serono will partner with MS advocacy and caregiver organizations as well as the larger MS community to develop actionable resources and programming based on patients' real-life experiences in hopes of improving the lives of people living with MS and caregivers.

"We want to learn from the MS community and work hand-in-hand to make a positive difference," said Rehan Verjee, President, EMD Serono, Global Head of Innovative Medicine Franchises, Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany. "This adds to our renewed commitment to continue to advance the science of MS in the hopes of one day finding a way to stop MS."

Recently, as a part of the #MSInsideOut campaign, the company premiered the documentary film, 'Seeing MS from the Inside Out', at the 34th Congress of the European Committee for Treatment and Research In Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS), in Berlin, Germany. Developed with Shift.ms as executive producers, it is the first global documentary film to pair artists, including Lydia Emily, and people from across the MS community, with a view to interpreting the experiences and perspectives of those impacted by MS through art.

MS is a chronic, inflammatory condition of the central nervous system affecting approximately 2.3 million people worldwide. Visit MSIsOnMyMind.com to learn more and tell us about when MS is on your mind.

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About Multiple Sclerosis
Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic, inflammatory condition of the central nervous system and is the most common, non-traumatic, disabling neurological disease in young adults. It is estimated that approximately 2.3 million people have MS worldwide. While symptoms can vary, the most common symptoms of MS include blurred vision, numbness or tingling in the limbs and problems with strength and coordination. The relapsing forms of MS are the most common.

EMD Serono, Inc. and Multiple Sclerosis
For more than 20 years, EMD Serono has been relentlessly focused on understanding the journey people living with MS face in order to create a meaningful, positive experience for them and the broader MS community. However, there is still much that is unknown about this complex and unpredictable disease. EMD Serono is digging deeper to advance the science and reconstruct a new understanding of MS, inside and out. We are committed to delivering solutions that improve the lives of all those affected by MS. www.GetCloserToMS.com

About Embracing Carers
Embracing Carers is a global initiative led by Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany in collaboration with leading caregiver organizations around the world designed to increase awareness, discussion, and action about the often-overlooked needs of caregivers. Given that caregivers need support and often do not know where to turn for help, Embracing Carers was created to help fill that void.

About EMD Serono, Inc. 
EMD Serono - the biopharmaceutical business of Merck KGaA, Darmstadt, Germany, in the U.S. and Canada – is engaged in the discovery, research and development of medicines for patients with difficult to treat diseases. The business is committed to transforming lives by developing and delivering meaningful solutions that help address the therapeutic and support needs of individual patients. Building on a proven legacy and deep expertise in neurology, fertility and endocrinology, EMD Serono is developing potential new oncology and immuno-oncology medicines while continuing to explore potential therapeutic options for diseases such as psoriasis, lupus and multiple sclerosis. Today, the business has approximately 1,300 employees around the country with commercial, clinical and research operations based in the company's home state of Massachusetts. 

About Shift.ms
Shift.ms - www.Shift.ms - is the social network for people with multiple sclerosis. Founded by MSers, for MSers, the charity supports many thousands of recently diagnosed people across the world as they make sense of MS. It's independent and it's free.

About #MSInsideOut
#MSInsideOut is a campaign supported by EMD Serono which focuses on understanding the journeys people living with MS face and telling the inside story of the disease. For more than 20 years, EMD Serono has been relentlessly focused on understanding the journey people living with MS face to create a meaningful, positive experience for them and the broader MS Community. With the #MSInsideOut campaign EMD Serono aims to better understand MS and, importantly, enable others to do the same.

Your Contact
Alice McGrail  1-781-681-2886



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