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Virginia Convenes Caregiving Stakeholders

October 31, 2017

Thanks to the tireless work of MS activists during the 2017 legislative session, the Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services (DARS) has launched a Family Caregiver Stakeholder Group.   The Stakeholders will produce a report on caregiving. The report will be presented to the Governor in 2019, with policy options suggested to increase supports for the 1 million family caregivers in Virginia.

Currently, Virginia does not have a complete inventory of programs and resources for individuals performing unpaid caregiving services for a family member, friend, or neighbor who is aging or living with a disability. There is also a growing need for affordable services such as respite care and activities of daily living. 

As a part of her role with the Society, Ashley Kenneth chairs the Virginia Caregiver Coalition. The 200-member Caregiver Coalition also supported convening stakeholders.  About this effort to study caregiving, Ashley said, “Continuously asking for state funding went nowhere, legislators want and need to know the caregiving landscape, identifying existing resources and determining solutions to address gaps in services and supports.  Thanks to Delegate Eileen Filler-Corn and Commisioner James Rothrock and Director Marcia Dubois of the Virginia Department for Aging and Rehabilitative Services we will now be able to provide Virginians the information they need to care for their loved ones.”

Read more about the Society’s position on the Virginia Caregiver Taskforce. 

About Multiple Sclerosis

Multiple sclerosis is an unpredictable, often disabling disease of the central nervous system that disrupts the flow of information within the brain, and between the brain and body. Symptoms range from numbness and tingling to blindness and paralysis. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are leading to better understanding and moving us closer to a world free of MS. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 50, with at least two to three times more women than men being diagnosed with the disease. MS affects more than 2.3 million people worldwide.

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