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Dedicated to the advancement of Muscular Dystrophy Association's (MDA) mission, the Association’s advocacy efforts are committed to making life better for people with muscular dystrophy. Through representation in matters of public policy and research advancement, nationally and internationally, we strive to be an effective voice for the hundreds of thousands of Americans served by MDA. We aim to encourage and facilitate active involvement of people with these diseases in the community at large as well as in matters of public policy that are of specific concern to those with disabilities
Since its founding in 1950, the MDA has become one of the nation’s largest and best known voluntary health agencies. MDA provides comprehensive medical services to tens of thousands of people with neuromuscular diseases at some 230 hospital-affiliated clinics across the country. The Association’s worldwide research program, which funds over four hundred individual scientific investigations annually, represents the largest single effort to advance knowledge of neuromuscular diseases in the world and to find cures and treatments for them.
At facilities in MDA’s nationwide network of hospital affiliated clinics, patients receive diagnostic and follow-up care from specialists in neuromuscular disease. In conjunction with this medical care, MDA provides many other direct services, including assistance with purchase and repair of wheelchairs and leg braces, assistance with the purchase of communication devices, summer camps for young people and support groups. MDA supports more research on neuromuscular disease than any other private-sector organization in the world, seeking causes of, cures and treatments for neuromuscular disorders. MDA funded scientists are in the forefront of cell-based therapy research and are testing potential treatments for several neuromuscular disorders. The Muscular Dystrophy Association is the first nonprofit organization honored with the American Medical Association’s Lifetime Achievement Award for "significant and lasting contributions to the health and welfare of humanity."
MDA conducts far reaching educational programs for the public and for medical professionals. To foster public understanding of neuromuscular disease, the Association produces and distributes a wide variety of print and audiovisual materials and maintains three award winning websites. To increase knowledge of neuromuscular disease among medical professionals, MDA sponsors scientific symposia and other meetings of neuromuscular specialists. Two of the strongest relationships maintained by the Muscular Dystrophy Association are with the University of Washington Medical Center and Children’s Hospital and Regional Medical Center. These two hospitals house MDA’s neuromuscular clinic services in their Rehabilitation Departments. At these clinics, patients receive a comprehensive team approach to managing their disease. The relationships MDA cultivates with top medical centers also allow MDA to refer patients to the best experts in the field of neuromuscular disease.
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