Apr 9, 2002
PR Newswire - USA
Spotlight Health, the leading creator of celebrity-featured health issue awareness campaigns, and Emmy Award-winning talk show host Montel Williams today launched a new Web site and toll-free telephone line dedicated to The Montel Williams MS Foundation to serve as an additional resource on multiple sclerosis and to provide information about the foundation's activities and donation opportunities.
The Web site -- http://www.montelms.org/ -- features a link to order a free "MS Take Action Kit," which includes a video about MS featuring Montel, comprehensive information on the diagnosis and treatment of the disease, and Montel's personal story. The kit can also be ordered from a new toll-free telephone line -- 1-877-MontelMS.
The new foundation site is linked to Spotlight Health's Web site ( http://www.spotlighthealth.com/ ), which features in-depth information on the disease, Montel's personal story, 24-hour MS support groups and live online chats. Spotlight Health is working closely with Montel throughout 2002 to promote awareness of multiple sclerosis with educational videos and printed materials, live online chats, print advertisements and public relations outreach.
Diagnosed with MS in 1999, Montel vowed to use his celebrity status to raise funds to research a cure for the often debilitating disease. To achieve his goal, he established The Montel Williams MS Foundation to further the scientific study of MS and disseminate information to MS patients and the general public.
The goals and scope of The Montel Williams MS Foundation are to provide financial assistance to select organizations and institutions conducting research, raise national awareness and educate the public.
"When you log onto the foundation's Web site at http://www.montelms.org/ you do two things: you arm yourself with knowledge about MS and you learn how to donate to my foundation where 100% of the public's donations currently go to research," Montel says. "I won't stop raising money for research until a cure is found."
Currently, three organizations are recipients of grants from the foundation. The first is The Nancy Davis Center Without Walls, a unique collaboration of leading scientists working together to establish research paradigms and share their findings. Another is The Karolinska Nobel Institute in Stockholm, Sweden, a trailblazer conducting groundbreaking research. And the third is The Foundation for Neurologic Diseases, a center that offers comprehensive care with its own immunology lab, MRI magnet, and clinical trials, as well as physical and occupational therapy and patient education.
"We are pleased to have helped Montel create yet another way to disseminate important information on MS," said Spotlight Health President and Chief Executive Officer Dr. Richard Hull. "Montel's foundation is an extremely worthy cause and an important complement to our MS awareness campaign."
MS is a chronic disease of the central nervous system that generally strikes between the ages of 20 and 40. Symptoms of MS range from mild numbness or tingling sensations in the limbs to severe paralysis or loss of vision. Because its varied symptoms manifest slowly and often overlap with other conditions, MS is one of the most difficult diseases to diagnose and understand.
Although many people in the United States have been diagnosed with the lifelong and potentially debilitating disease, recent polls and medical research suggest there is a high prevalence of unknown cases because it is difficult to diagnose -- meaning many people are not receiving proper care and treatment. Currently, there is no cure for MS.
A special episode of The Montel Williams Show will air on Friday, April 12, entitled "Against All Odds: Living with MS." During the show, Montel will talk with several people who are living with, and fiercely battling, MS.
About The Montel Williams MS Foundation
When Montel was diagnosed with MS in 1999, he made a pledge to use his celebrity to find a cure. Because of his unique position, Montel has had access to current research being conducted around the world. And, true to his word, he has established The Montel Williams MS Foundation to further the scientific study of MS and disseminate information to sufferers and the general public. The goals and scope of The Montel Williams MS Foundation are far-reaching: they are to provide financial assistance to select organizations and institutions conducting research, to raise national awareness and to educate the public. For more information, visit http://www.montelms.org/ .
About Spotlight Health
Spotlight Health is the leading creator of celebrity-featured omnimedia health-issue awareness campaigns. Compelling stories of celebrities' personal health experiences are merged with accurate, understandable medical information -- creating engaging, supportive health-care information. Spotlight Health delivers this unique content to target consumers and physicians through multiple, coordinated distribution channels that include the Web, television, radio, print, software and live events.
Contact: Alicia Johnson of Spotlight Health, +1-310-282-2414
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