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U.S. Senator Dick Durbin Named National MS Society U.S. Senator of the Year

March 20, 2017

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society has recognized U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) as its 2016 U.S. Senator of the Year.

Sen. Durbin is a member of the Congressional Multiple Sclerosis Caucus and the Congressional Biomedical Research Caucus. He is a vocal leader on many policies that benefit MS research and people affected by MS. During the 114th Congress, Sen. Durbin successfully spearheaded an effort to protect the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs through an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act. He supports increased funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and voted in favor of 21st Century Cures that includes many impactful provisions such as the Advancing Research for Neurological Diseases Act and increased funding for the NIH and Food and Drug Administration.
“We are proud to honor Dick Durbin as the U.S. Senator of the Year,” said National MS Society President and CEO Cyndi Zagieboylo. “His commitment to protect funds for vital MS research helps us maintain the momentum of research discovery treatments for all people living with MS.”
Sen. Durbin urged the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to protect access to manual and power Complex Rehabilitation Technology accessories by excluding them from Medicare's Competitive Bidding Program. Most recently, Sen. Durbin signed a letter to then President-elect Trump about the need to bring down the cost of prescription drugs.
“I’m honored to fight on your behalf because of the worthy mission you have,” said Durbin in accepting the award. “Securing real increases for national biomedical research is one of my top priorities.”

The National MS Society presented Dick Durbin with the U.S. Senator of the Year award during its 26th annual Public Policy Conference, held March 20-22. The event united nearly 300 MS activists from across the country in Washington, D.C. to educate elected officials about the needs of people affected by MS.
For more information on the Society and MS issues, visit,,, or follow #MS, #MSactivist, #MSresearch #NIH #CDMRP, and #neurodata on social media.

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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