Eosinophil-associated diseases community bands together for awareness and action
(ATLANTA, GA)—This week (May 14-20, 2017), the American Partnership for Eosinophilic Disorders (APFED) celebrates the 10th Annual National Eosinophil Awareness Week (NEAW). NEAW was established in 2007 by APFED, a nonprofit patient advocacy organization, to support those who have eosinophil-associated diseases (EADs) and to raise the level of education and awareness in the public and the medical community about these conditions.
Imagine having a rare disease the most people cannot pronounce and that many doctors have not seen or do not understand. You travel from doctor to doctor looking for answers, only to find that once you have a diagnosis, treatments are few. This is the reality for people who suffer from an eosinophil (ee–oh–sin–oh–fil) associated disease, a group of rare diseases caused by a white blood cell called the eosinophil.
EADs can cause disease in many different organs and can present differently depending on the type involved. Those that suffer often embark on a long, frustrating journey seeing many different specialists before a diagnosis is made. Although not commonly life-threatening, these chronic diseases require lifelong treatment and can cause debilitating symptoms. There is no cure and no FDA-approved treatments for most subsets of EAD.
In honor of NEAW, members of the EAD community have joined together with APFED to develop an action-oriented social media campaign called READ for EAD: Rally Around Eosinophil Associated Diseases. The campaign is designed to inspire, educate, and remind patients that they are not alone. During NEAW, participants will dedicate words of inspiration to a loved one and share on social media using the hashtag #READ4EAD, and challenge their friends and family members to participate and/or make a donation to APFED.
“We are inspired every day by amazing individuals with EADs and their families,” said APFED Executive Director Mary Jo Strobel. “We know these READ for EAD contributions will help further strengthen the EAD community, offering not only inspiration but also a reminder that there are others out there who know the unique challenges of life with an EAD. It’s a fun, easy, and meaningful way to spread awareness far and wide.”
Organizations, healthcare providers, and institutions around the globe are joining APFED to recognize National Eosinophil Awareness Week by sharing information with their communities and with the public. Nutricia, the makers of Neocate®, a line of amino acid-based products, has partnered with APFED for its celebration of this special week by providing the means for the organization to distribute educational packets to health care providers and awareness materials to the public.
“By taking action and educating others during NEAW, we can provide hope to patients and families living with these diseases, and change the future,” shares APFED’s President Dr. Wendy Book. “This week is a special time that joins the research community, health care providers, caregivers, and people living with EADs together to heighten awareness and continue to advance these conditions through education, research, and advocacy.”
Visit apfed.org to learn more about eosinophil-associated diseases, current research efforts, and community events that are taking place during National Eosinophil Awareness Week.
Organizations, Groups, and Healthcare Providers Joining APFED in Celebrating NEAW: Akron Children’s Hospital; Alabama Eosinophilic Disorders Support Group; American Partnership for Eosinophilic Disorders; ausEE (Australia); Center to Advance Palliative Care; Cincinnati Center for Eosinophilic Disorders; Families Affected by Eosinophilic Disorders (UK); Greenville Spartanburg Eos Support Group; Kids with Food Allergies (KFA); International Foundation for Functional Gastrointestinal Disorders (IFFGD); National Eosinophilia Myalgia Syndrome Network (NEMSN); New York Metro Eos Support Group; Utah Food Allergy Network Division of Eosinophilic Support. Learn more about what our partners are doing to recognize NEAW 2017.
About American Partnership for Eosinophilic Disorders (APFED)
The American Partnership for Eosinophilic Disorders (APFED) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to passionately embrace, support, and improve the lives of patients and families affected by eosinophil-associated diseases through education and awareness, research, support, and advocacy. To learn more about APFED and eosinophil-associated diseases, visit apfed.org.