The Susie Novis Durie Educational Grants were created to help member organizations of the IMF’s Global Myeloma Action Network (GMAN) increase education, awareness, and access to treatment.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, SND Grants focused on digital projects that would leverage the need of patients.
The 2020 Susie Novis Durie Grants Were Awarded To:
Armenia (Digital Awareness Campaign)
The Armenian Hematology Association (AHA) had digital projects aimed at increasing awareness of myeloma.
Translation and production of IMF education information into Armenian, creation and launch of the professional website designed for patients, educational lecture module for patients, caregivers and doctors, and an international teleconference on Multiple Myeloma Awareness Day were topics of that campaign.
The patient website was the most exciting part of this project because it became the first webpage created especially for myeloma patients in Armenia.
Most recent and verified information provided by healthcare specialists is now available for individuals with multiple myeloma. The website intends to answer all major questions associated with the disease through necessary information regarding epidemiology, procedures related to diagnostic workup, management, and treatment.
Contact information of medical centers and doctors specializing in the field of hematological oncology are publicly available to make arranging for medical checkups and visits easier.
Argentina (Safe Transportation Program)
Fundacion Argentina De Mieloma (FAM) had another project for SND Grants. The Safe Transportation Program provides safe transfers to hospitals for low-income myeloma patients by public service.
FAM created an awareness campaign which highlights the importance and benefits of getting uninterrupted treatments while publicizing the availability of the shuttle service.
Through the Safe Transportation Program, FAM is able to provide myeloma patients with the ease and convenience of getting to care centers with transportation that’s safe, hygienic, and private.
The COVID-19 pandemic has made it especially difficult for many myeloma patients to access timely treatments at hospitals due to limited public transportation. FAM’s Safe Transportation Program is the perfect and effective solution that addresses this concern.
Romania (Medical Support For MM Patients)
Myeloma Euronet Romania (MER) proposed a project that provides medical support for multiple myeloma patients with two activities in mind.
The first one is related to conducting minimum required blood tests from home when a myeloma patient is in an emergency (i.e., blood count, renal tests, calcium) to establish the patient’s fitness to continue treatment for multiple myeloma.
Myeloma patients are most vulnerable and a trip to the hospital via public transportation exposes them to viruses like COVID-19. MER’s goal is to commission a multi-branch laboratory in Bucharest to conduct blood test harvesting for myeloma patients. Apart from the minimum required blood tests, myeloma patients can also get a COVID-19 test, if necessary.
The second activity is the establishment of an online platform for telemedicine where patients can ask their doctors for an online consultation. This ease of access and patient-doctor communication will enable doctors to quickly assess whether a patient needs to go to a clinic immediately or if it’s safer for the patient to wait until the situation becomes more stable and the danger of infection is reduced to a minimum.