Diana Crowe who is Head of Services at Multiple Sclerosis UK (MS-UK) talks about her organisation’s multiple sclerosis awareness training aimed at social prescribers.
Did you know that multiple sclerosis (MS) is the most common disabling neurological condition in younger, working aged adults in the UK? It is estimated that there are over 130,000 people in the UK who live with MS. The prevalence of MS is much higher in Scotland than in the rest of the UK. In Scotland there are approximately 290 people diagnosed per 100,000 in the population versus 190 per 100,000 in England. The further north you get the higher the prevalence rates become, with Orkney having the highest MS prevalence rates in the world.
As well as having potential to affect physical ability, mobility, balance, strength, and coordination there are also many hidden symptoms such as fatigue, cognitive issues or problems with bladder and bowel.
MS can impact on many aspects of daily life including employment, relationships, and overall wellbeing. Through research that MS-UK conducted pre-pandemic we found that 71 per cent of people affected by MS experienced issues with loneliness and isolation. We predict that this has been compounded and made worse since the pandemic.
Combining these social, physical, and mental health factors, it highlights why people with MS may need support from community-based organisations.
Knowing that social prescription services are such a vital part of universal services to support community wellbeing, this is why MS-UK are offering three free MS awareness training for Community Link workers and Social prescribers in 2024. MS-UK want to share our knowledge to help services increase their understanding of MS and the wider support available to the MS community.
Our training includes
- What is MS?
- Myths and preconceptions
- A lived experience of MS
- Symptoms that may impact on wellbeing and symptom management
- The support that people with MS may need on their MS journey
We will share knowledge of the condition and useful MS specific resources. The training session will be delivered in partnership with a volunteer directly affected by MS. Our organisational values ensure that real voices and experiences of people living with MS are at the heart of everything we do.
Please go to our services page to download our services brochure.
Diana Crowe is Head of Services at MS-UK