Australia’s largest multiple sclerosis (MS) longitudinal study is looking for new participants.
The Australian MS Longitudinal Study (AMSLS) is a national collaborative survey platform run by the University of Tasmania’s Menzies Institute for Medical Research and MS Research Australia.
The AMSLS started in 2001, and around 10% of people diagnosed with MS in Australia are currently taking part.
Longitudinal research involves following people over time, and the AMSLS tracks areas such as lifestyle, employment, other medical conditions, current treatments, medical costs, and overall quality of life.
People at all stages of their MS journey are encouraged to help us make change by joining the thousands of Australians already telling their story through the AMSLS.
“It’s vital that we have as many people as possible providing us with data, because that helps to ensure the most complete picture of what it is like to live in Australia with MS,” Associate Professor Ingrid van der Mei, Project Manager of the AMSLS, said.
“People living with MS can have a positive impact by contributing just a few hours a year from the comfort of their own home. The study enhances our understanding of MS, which helps provide better services and support for people living with MS. It also provides the evidence we need to advocate for positive change for everyone living with the disease.”
Since 2001, the AMSLS has revealed important information about MS in Australia, including an increase in the number of people living with MS from 21,283 in 2010 to 25,607 in 2017 (over 20%), and that the total costs for all people with MS have increased substantially over time from $1.24 billion in 2010 to $1.75 billion in 2017 (an increase of 41%).
Head of Research at MS Research Australia, Dr Julia Morahan, said, “the AMSLS has produced tangible benefits for people living with MS since its inception and with more people taking part, this will boost our ability to use the information to improve lives.”