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U.S. Representative Ryan Costello Honored for Commitment to Changing the World for People Living with Multiple Sclerosis

March 1, 2018

The National Multiple Sclerosis (MS) Society has named U.S. Rep. Ryan Costello, of Pennsylvania’s 6th District, as its 2017 U.S. Representative of the Year. 

Since his election in 2014, Rep. Costello has played a critical role in support of those living with MS as co-chair of the Congressional MS Caucus and co-lead of Dear Colleague campaigns that call for increased funding for MS-related research. 

Additionally, Rep. Costello has consistently taken legislative positions that further showcase his commitment to the cause. He voted against the American Health Care Act in 2017, which would have eroded protections for people with pre-existing conditions, caused millions of Americans to lose healthcare coverage and weakened the Medicaid program. He co-sponsored two important bills that have been signed into law. The first repeals the Medicare therapy cap which will enable people with MS to access needed physical, occupational and speech-language therapy. The second—the Recognize, Assist, Include Support and Engage (RAISE) Family Caregivers Act—will establish a national coordinated strategy to better support family caregivers.
 
“Representative Costello recognizes the many factors that fold into a life with MS and has wasted no time in working toward addressing them,” said National MS Society President and CEO Cyndi Zagieboylo. “From research breakthroughs, to enhancing everyday care and support systems, the efforts led by Representative Costello are invaluable as we work toward ending MS.”
 
“Hearing from constituents and their families who are living with Multiple Sclerosis has given me valuable insight into how to support them through my work in Congress. More research can lead to the genesis of new treatments and reducing regulatory burdens can result in life changing care – I’ve been proud to advocate for each of these initiatives in the past and will continue to do so in the future,” said Rep. Ryan Costello (PA-06), Co-Chair of the Congressional Multiple Sclerosis Caucus. “I am honored to receive this award, but above all, I am honored to be a voice for the many families and caregivers who are courageously advocating for a cure to defeat MS.”
 
The National MS Society presented Rep. Costello with the U.S. Representative of the Year award during its 27th annual Public Policy Conference, held March 5-7, where more than 300 MS activists from across the country joined together in Washington, D.C. to educate elected officials about the needs of people living with MS. Nominations for the honor are open to the public. Awardees are chosen by the National MS Society Board of Directors.

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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