This last year was a year of transition at NARCOMS, with new leadership and some new directions for NARCOMS. As many of you already know, Dr. Timothy Vollmer stepped down at the end of 2010 after leading NARCOMS since its original inception. His bold vision for NARCOMS and passion in engaging persons with MS in their own research gave rise to what is now the largest voluntary MS registry in the world. To better manage such a large registry and focus on more research projects, the director role was divided into two – Scientific Director and Managing Director. In addition to organizing the NARCOMS leadership and personnel, NARCOMS has developed a strategic plan with specific initiatives to help refine our Vision, Mission, and Goals for NARCOMS.
ORGANIZATION OF NARCOMS
Dr. Ruth Ann Marrie
A clinical neurologist and epidemiologist from the University of Manitoba (Canada), Dr. Marrie oversees the scientific direction of NARCOMS. This includes topics for update surveys, research priorities, analysis of the data collected, and review of results that come out of NARCOMS projects.
Dr. Robert Fox
Dr. Fox, also a clinical neurologist, will provide administrative oversight for NARCOMS. Including interactions with external collaborators, management of ongoing NARCOMS projects, fiscal oversight, and reporting to our parent organization the Consortium of MS Centers.
Dr. Gary Cutter
Dr. Cutter (PhD), a Biostatistician and MS Researcher at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, coordinates and manages all research projects and oversees the NARCOMS staff at UAB to ensure the day-to-day operations flow smoothly.
NARCOMS MISSION STATEMENT
To improve clinical care and quality of life for persons with multiple sclerosis and their families through increased knowledge about MS.
To conduct epidemiological and health services research in multiple sclerosis. To support new investigators and facilitate exploration of emerging research areas, as well as collaborative multi-center research focused on multiple sclerosis, its treatment and prevention.
Patient: Increase understanding of MS from the perspective of the person with MS
Disease Management: Assess knowledge of treatment and healthcare services, including expected and unexpected consequences thereof
Knowledge Transfer: Disseminate knowledge and increase awareness of MS and its management to patients, their families, care providers, researchers, advocacy groups and policymakers