Wishart marks MS Awareness Week

24 Apr 2024
MS Awareness Week 22 to 28 April

Shetland MSP and Scottish Liberal Democrat Beatrice Wishart is supporting the national campaign to break Multiple Sclerosis (MS) taboos this MS Awareness Week, 22nd  – 28th  April 2024. This year’s theme is ‘MS Unfiltered’  seeking to shine a light on MS topics that can feel taboo or difficult to talk about to help break the stigma around some of the lesser-known symptoms. It also seeks to encourage and empower people with MS to speak up and get support when they need it.

15,000 people are living with multiple sclerosis (MS) in Scotland and each week 14 people are diagnosed in Scotland alone, with a high prevalence of those diagnosed living in the Northern Isles. The condition affects the brain and spinal cord, impacting how people move, think and feel. Symptoms are different for everyone, and can be exhausting, debilitating and unpredictable.

Ms Wishart is a member of the Scottish Parliament’s Cross Party Group on MS. At the end of last year in the Parliament Chamber Wishart raised the campaign to move away from current assessments for social security support which are not fully reflective of the impact on conditions, such as MS, on a person’s need for additional payment support.

Ms Wishart said:

“Research continues into why there is greater prevalence of MS in the Northern Isles and for new treatments and therapies. We all look forward to the day when we can say we have found a way to stop MS.

“Getting financial support from the Government often requires a walking test. What these tests don’t measure is the long term, changeable, fluctuating nature of MS that some experience. Walking any distance could feel much easier one day than the next.

“This year’s awareness week seeks to encourage and empower people with MS to speak up and get support. Organisations such as the MS Society can be invaluable in helping outline what support is available.”


Notes to Editors

You can watch Ms Wishart’s question to the Scottish Government to change social security support assessments here.

The MS Society’s website can be found here.

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