Merz North America Pledges $1,000,000 in Fellowship Grants to the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation (DMRF)
November 10, 2014 09:00 AM Eastern Standard Time
GREENSBORO, N.C.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Merz North America (U.S. affiliate of the global Merz Pharma Group), today announced that it will award up to $1,000,000 in grants to the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation’s (DMRF) Clinical Fellowship Training Program over the course of the next three years. Merz’s contribution will fund one-year fellowship grants to advance physician training and education in the diagnosis and treatment of dystonia, a neurological movement disorder that causes involuntary muscle spasms.
“As someone who is affected by dystonia, I know all too well the importance of having physicians who recognize dystonia and know how to treat it. The DMRF is pleased to partner with Merz in providing this critically important program”
“Here at Merz, we believe that one of the most important ways we can support dystonia patients is to fund physician training and education. By providing funding for the DMRF Clinical Fellowship Training Program, we hope to raise awareness of dystonia among the next generation of movement disorder physicians, ensuring that they are better prepared to diagnose and treat this rare but serious disease,“ said Bill Humphries, President and Chief Executive Officer for Merz North America, Inc.
Since the introduction of Xeomin® (incobotulinumtoxinA) to the U.S. in 2010, Merz Neurosciences has invested approximately $4MM dollars in physician education programs and initiatives, including investigator initiated trials, continuing medical education, and fellowship training. Merz also continues to improve patient access to Xeomin® (incobotulinumtoxinA) through its co-pay assistance program and patient access program. For patients who meet specific qualification criteria, the co-pay program is available to cover up to $500 in treatment related out-of-pocket expenses, and the patient assistance program provides access to Xeomin® (incobotulinumtoxinA) for uninsured or under-insured patients.
The DMRF Clinical Fellowship Training Program supports the training of exceptionally qualified neurologists in preparation for a clinical career in movement disorders. The Program focuses on critical aspects of dystonia, including clinical diagnosis and evaluation, ongoing patient care and management, pharmacotherapy with a special emphasis on neurotoxin therapy, and neurosurgical interventions. Training emphasizes a patient-centric approach and includes hands-on experience in clinics as well as participation in professional meetings and workshops.
“As someone who is affected by dystonia, I know all too well the importance of having physicians who recognize dystonia and know how to treat it. The DMRF is pleased to partner with Merz in providing this critically important program,” said Art Kessler, President of the Board of Directors for the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation (DMRF).
Dystonia affects men, women and children of all backgrounds, and estimates suggest approximately 300,000 people in North America suffer from the disorder. Multiple treatment options exist, but there presently is no cure for dystonia and its characteristic involuntary muscle contractions and spasms, which cause mild to severe degrees of disability and pain.
About the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation (DMRF)
Founded in 1976, the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation (DMRF) is a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to serving all people with dystonia and their families. Since its inception, the DMRF has grown from a small family-based foundation into a dynamic membership-driven organization led by a Board of Directors and network of volunteers with personal connections to dystonia. Because dystonia hits so close to home for our directors and volunteers, the DMRF leadership is motivated by an unrelenting drive to find a cure and an unwavering commitment to serving people affected by dystonia. For more information about the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation and the Clinical Fellowship Training Program, please visit: www.dystonia-foundation.org.
About Merz Neurosciences
Merz Neurosciences is a division of Merz North America, a specialty healthcare company that develops and commercializes treatment solutions in aesthetics, dermatology and neurosciences in the U.S. and Canada. Merz Neurosciences is committed to providing high-quality products and outstanding service to physicians in the fields of neurology, physiatry and otolaryngology. By developing products that improve patients’ health and help them to live better, feel better and look better, Merz will continue to make significant contributions to the well-being of individuals around the world. Merz Neurosciences is an important contributor to the U.S. neurosciences space, offering a well-balanced product portfolio that includes the neurotoxin Xeomin® (incobotulinumtoxinA), the anticholinergic Cuvposa™ (glycopyrrolate) Oral Solution and the Prolaryn™ injectable implant products. For more information about Merz Neurosciences and their U.S. product portfolio, please visit www.merzusa.com.