Cost Efficiency and Promoting Healthy Lifestyles in Multiple Sclerosis: Bruce Bebo, PhD


At the ACTRIMS Forum 2022, the executive vice president of the National MS Society commented on the need to diagnose and initiate treatment for MS early, as well as employing wellness strategies to reduce risk of comorbidities. [WATCH TIME: 4 minutes]

WATCH TIME: 4 minutes

“Employers [and] other organizations [are] looking to increase people's exercise, diet, wellness, in order to reduce the expense of providing health care for the populations that they serve, so I do think that lifestyle, wellness activities have the potential of reducing the economic burden of MS, as well as all comorbidities associated with MS.”

Data recently presented at the Americas Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ACTRIMS) Forum 2022, February 24-26, in West Palm Beach, Florida, outlined the economic burden associated with multiple sclerosis (MS) in the US in 2019. Incremental costs associated with the disease exceed $83 billion annually, creating financial hardships for those diagnosed. Lead investigator on the study, Bruce Bebo, PhD, executive vice president, National MS Society, spoke with NeurologyLive® on these findings, noting that lifestyle and wellness strategies may have on the disease course of MS.

While the study did not address wasted costs or inefficiencies, when queried about this, Bebo noted that will require additional study; however, earlier diagnosis and treatment of MS with disease-modifying therapies could be initiatives that will, in the long run, reduce financial, social, and personal impacts of the disease.

Bebo further noted another presentation at ACTRIMS covering comorbidities in MS and spoke on the need to promote healthy lifestyles and wellness strategies to mitigate the risk of developing comorbidities or to manage them more effectively if they do arise. According to Bebo, this can be particularly effective for patients with progressive forms of MS, as he believes there should be a comprehensive approach that acknowledges the importance of health and wellness as a “major part of the therapeutic prescription.”

For more coverage of ACTRIMS Forum 2022, click here.

1. Bebo B, Cintina I, Yang W, et al. Economic burden of multiple sclerosis in 2019. Presented at ACTRIMS Forum 2022; February 24-26; West Palm Beach, FL and Virtual. Session CE3.1.
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