Telehealth has been an important element in U.S. health care for decades, but the COVID-19 public health emergency has put a spotlight on the need to maintain and expand access to telehealth to ensure everyone can receive appropriate care when and where they need it.
The physical impact of living with ALS presents multiple challenges for those diagnosed and their families as the disease progresses. With the help of innovative technologies, some facilities around the country are finding creative ways to do whatever it takes to make ALS a livable disease.
Taking the time to understand the disease’s progression and make plans to deal with the physical impact can help ease the burdens faced by people living with ALS and their caregivers, helping them live longer, stronger, more independent lives.
The ALS Association and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) have entered into a partnership to help improve the lives of Veterans living with ALS by increasing the number of Veterans Health Administration (VHA) clinics that are designated as Certified Treatment Centers of Excellence and Recognized Treatment Centers.
Across the country, teams of health care professionals specially trained to address the needs of people living with ALS are doing whatever it takes to provide the specialized care and support their patients require.
The ALS Association’s Certified Treatment Centers of Excellence and Recognized Treatment Centers are dedicated to doing whatever it takes to provide compassionate care in a supportive, family-oriented atmosphere to help their patients live longer and stronger lives. One such center is the Phil Smith Neuroscience Institute at Holy Cross Health located in south Florida. “No matter what, the patient always comes first,” says Tina Duane, Regional Program Manager at The ALS Association Florida Chapter.
We are on an urgent mission to make ALS a livable disease by 2030, to discover and fund promising treatments and to discover a cure. Our best opportunity to fulfill this promise and to continue delivering in the areas of Care, Advocacy, and Research is to reinvigorate our commitment to work as one. Driven by this belief, we will move from a federated to a unified structure.
Health disparities in underserved and rural communities present serious challenges for people living with ALS. Like many of our local chapters around the country, The ALS Association Central and Southern Ohio Chapter and the team at OhioHealth ALS Clinic are working together to change that. In the fall of 2019, Michelle Edwardson, Director of Care Services for the chapter, began working with the team at one of their Certified Centers of Excellence, OhioHealth ALS Clinic, to develop a one-day comprehensive educational symposium for people living with ALS, their caregivers and medical professionals.
Investigators at Emory University School of Medicine reviewed 23 years of data from 1997-2020 for patients seen at the Emory ALS Center. To allow for adequate analysis of disease survival time, researchers included all patients who self-reported their race as Black or White and symptom onset was before January 1, 2017. A total of 1,298 patients were included in the study, 203 of whom were Black, and 1,095 of whom were White.
Recent changes to Medicare will enable people with ALS to receive services from speech language pathologists via telehealth through the end of the COVID-19 pandemic. These services include clinical care for swallowing and speech-generating devices - many challenges people living with ALS are faced with every day.
Recent changes at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will enable people with ALS to receive critical services provided by speech therapists, normally provided at in-person visits, via telehealth during the pandemic. These services include clinical care for swallowing and speech-generating devices - many challenges people living with ALS are faced with every day.
People living with ALS will likely experience complications related to the disease that warrant a visit to the hospital at some point in their journey. At the same time, they are not immune from other injuries or medical issues—people with ALS can still get sick or possibly hurt themselves in ways unrelated to the disease. Making the conscious choice to be prepared can make all the difference.
As Feeding Tube Awareness Week comes to a close, we spoke with Brenda and Kelly Kraft and asked them to share their family’s story about their personal experience with making this difficult decision, and the relief they felt once they had made it.
Through word of mouth, Stuart and his wife Marcia found five or six families in their community who were also dealing with the impact of an ALS diagnosis. They started an informal support group. The group started working with the chapter relations team at The ALS Association and formed The ALS Association Alabama Chapter.