Merck and Al Jalila Foundation join forces to support multiple sclerosis (MS) patients in the UAE

Merck, a leading company for innovative and top-quality high-tech products and Al Jalila Foundation, a global, UAE-based philanthropic organisation founded by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, announced Music for the MS Soul a fund raising concert to support multiple sclerosis patients in the UAE. The concert will be performed by Deutsche Philharmonic Merck and is set to take place on November 1st, 2014 at Burj Park, Downtown Dubai, UAE.

The announcement was made at a MoU signing between Merck and Al Jalila Foundation to form a strategic partnership to develop awareness, fund-raising and research initiatives for Multiple Sclerosis. An autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system, MS makes it difficult for the nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord to communicate effectively with one another. Disease causes these patients different grades of disability that even keeps progressing. Symptoms usually appear during early adulthood, devastatingly impacting a patients quality of life.

Such partnerships help generate the awareness and support needed to fund our medical education, research and treatment programmes, such as Aawen, where we aim to provide practical assistance and financial aid to those who desperately need it, said Dr Abdulkareem Sultan Al Olama, Chief Executive Officer of A Jalila Foundation, MS often comes with the challenge of having to face the stigma, which has cornered patients into hiding. Through Music for the MS Soul and our work with Merck, we hope to raise awareness among the community and provide patients with the support and tools needed to regain their lives.

Studies indicate that patients often turn to music therapy to help with their condition and is in fact a form of therapy used to help patients learn to initiate and coordinate movements, improve memory and cognitive impairment, as well as improve physical strength and flexibility. Knowing that music therapy is always an inspiration, this encouraged us to invite the Deutsche Philharmonie Merck to perform a fund raising concert in Dubai for the sake of MS patients as a part of the many initiatives under our MoU with Al Jalila Foundation, said Paolo Carli, Head of Middle East & Egypt Region at Merck Serono, We have a long history of focusing on the needs of our patients and are committed to enhancing patient support and improved care for those suffering from MS. Through our strategic partnership with Al Jalila Foundation we will be able to better serve patients by bringing them closer to the treatment, care and support they need to live a better quality of life, even with MS.

Tickets for the concert go on sale on Friday October 24, 2014 and are available at . All proceeds from ticket sales will go towards funds needed to support MS patients.

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