Norwalk, Conn., and San Francisco, Calif, Feb. 27, 2023 – The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) and the Lazarex Cancer Foundation, a non-profit organization focused on improving patient access to cancer clinical trials, announced today a partnership to support more equitable access to clinical trials for multiple myeloma cancer patients. This is the initial step of an action plan the MMRF developed to improve diversity and representation in myeloma clinical trials following its first Health Equity Summit focused on improving equity and inclusiveness in multiple myeloma clinical research.
“We at the MMRF believe that every myeloma patient should have an equal opportunity to participate in clinical trials and are deeply committed to improving representation in clinical research,” said Michael Andreini, President and CEO at the MMRF. “We are pleased to partner with the Lazarex Cancer Foundation to improve the opportunities patients have to help advance development of new therapies and potentially benefit from emerging treatment approaches.”
As part of the partnership, the MMRF contributed $100,000 to Lazarex’s PATH Program, a service designed to improve enrollment and diversity in clinical trials through patient reimbursement of out-of-pocket travel costs, community outreach, and engagement. Lazarex will support patients in MMRF-funded clinical trials, as well as help multiple myeloma patients find information and enroll in open trials, as appropriate, through the Lazarex CARE program.
Multiple myeloma is a type of blood cancer that develops in the bone marrow and can spread throughout the body. It is expected to be diagnosed in 35,000 Americans in 2023 and take the lives of 12,000. Despite advances, most patients relapse and there is still no cure. Multiple myeloma is twice as common in the Black community compared to other ethnicities and is twice as deadly in Black patients compared to white patients.
“Lazarex Cancer Foundation is honored to work alongside the MMRF to support patients with multiple myeloma with travel reimbursement and help them get to clinical trial treatments,” said Stephanie Rivera, MPH, CEO at Lazarex Cancer Foundation. “The MMRF is one of the few research organizations that clearly understands how we partner with research for successful completion of and improved diversity in cancer clinical trials. I see this as just the start of greater things to come for both organizations to benefit patients with multiple myeloma.”
Other elements of the MMRF’s partnership with the Lazarex Cancer Foundation include developing and expanding collateral, creating content for a speaker series on myeloma and supplying MMRF resources, such as the Patient Toolkit, to Lazarex Cancer Foundation activities.
About the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)
The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) is the largest nonprofit in the world solely focused on accelerating a cure for each and every multiple myeloma patient. We drive the development and delivery of next-generation therapies, use data to drive optimal and more personalized treatment approaches, and empower myeloma patients with information and resources to extend their lives. Central to our mission is our commitment to advancing health equity so that all myeloma patients can benefit from the scientific and clinical advances we pursue. Since our inception, the MMRF has committed over $500 million for research, opened nearly 100 clinical trials, and helped bring 15+ FDA-approved therapies to market, which have tripled the life expectancy of myeloma patients. To learn more, visit www.themmrf.org.
About Lazarex Cancer Foundation At Lazarex Cancer Foundation we strive to improve cancer health outcomes, FDA cancer clinical trial diversity, retention, and enrollment, and patient access to care by providing assistance with clinical trial navigation, reimbursing trial related travel costs, and partnering with at-risk communities to mobilize resources. In 17 years Lazarex has assisted nearly 8,000 patients. Learn more at www.Lazarex.org. Follow us @LazarexCF.
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Director, PR and Communications
Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)