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CMSC Press Release: New CE Program Helps Distinguish Between Primary Care Needs & MS Symptoms

Monday, April 14, 2014   (0 Comments)
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New Continuing Education Program Helps Practitioners Distinguish Between Primary Care Needs & Multiple Sclerosis Symptoms

Top Health Care Organizations for Multiple Sclerosis, Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants, Present Case-Based Courses for Better MS Care.

(Hackensack, NJ, April 2014) – The Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers (CMSC) has partnered with the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), the American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA), and CME Connections, LLC (formerly the Goodale-Coe Group) to produce two online educational courses entitled: Distinguishing Between Primary Care Needs and the Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis: A Collaborative Approach to Appropriate Referrals. These accredited programs are designed to help primary care providers distinguish between routine primary care needs and specific symptoms of multiple sclerosis (MS) that may require referral to an MS specialist.

The interactive programs present clinically relevant case studies related to medication choices, life style issues, and MS symptom management. Specifically, they emphasize the importance of communication and collaboration among healthcare providers to improve the outcomes of patient care.

Course content is based on material presented during the AANP 28th National Conference held at the Palazzo and Sands Expo and Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Featured faculty includes Stephanie Agrella, MSN, APRN, ANP-BC, MSCN, Adult Nurse Practitioner, Director of Clinical Services, Multiple Sclerosis Clinic of Central Texas; B. L. Nick Burnett, DNP, FNP-C, APRN, BC, FAANP, Clinic Manager, Family Nurse Practitioner, State Center, Iowa; Edward Fox, MD, PhD, FAAN, Director of the Multiple Sclerosis Clinic of Central Texas; and Lori Mayer, MSN, DNP(c), MSCN, CCRP, Director of Medical Research Services, Multiple Sclerosis Clinic of Central Texas.

With the Affordable Care Act becoming a reality, the role of NPs and PAs in caring for patients with diseases that have variable courses like multiple sclerosis will continue to expand in all chronic illnesses, particularly MS. We are excited to partner with the CMSC to offer this program to our members and to provide a better understanding of what can be treated in a primary care setting and what needs to be referred to a MS specialist, said Anne Norman, DNP, APRN, FNP-BC, Associate Vice President of Education at the AANP.

The faculty for the AAPA course includes Scott Newsome, DO, Assistant Professor of Neurology and Director of Neurology Outpatient Services, John Hopkins University; Bryan Walker, MHS, PA-C, Assistant Professor of Physician Assistant Studies, The George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Science; and Kathy Costello, MS, ANP-BC, MSCN, formerly Assistant Professor of Neurology, Neuroimmunology, and Neuroinfectious Diseases, Johns Hopkins Hospital and currently the Associate Vice President, Clinical Care Advocacy, Services and Research Department, National Multiple Sclerosis Society.

PAs practice medicine in every medical setting and specialty, and are treating patients with MS. Having access to the latest information on the basic and advanced fundamentals of MS diagnosis and treatment will help PAs become stronger members of the MS patient’s health care team, said Mike Saxton, MEd, CCMEP, FACME; Chief Learning Officer at the AAPA.

For more information and to register for the Distinguishing Between Primary Care Needs and the Symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis: A Collaborative Approach to Appropriate Referrals, CME/CE activity courses for NPs through AANP CE Center and available to PAs through AAPA’s Learning Central. The courses can also be accessed through


About American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)
Founded in 1985, the American Association of Nurse Practitioners® (AANP) is the largest full‐service professional organization in the United States for nurse practitioners (NPs) of all specialties. AANP currently has more than 50,000 individual members and represents the interest of over 189,000 practicing NPs in the United States. AANP’s mission is to lead NPs in transforming patient centered health care. While AANP’s membership is largely made up of primary care NPs, we also have the largest individual student NP membership of any organization. We further maintain direct communication with over 350 university and college based graduate NP academic programs and a network of NP organization members which include other national, state, and local NP organizations. This network provides a unique reach to NPs in a wide range of communities and settings.

The AANP offers a unique CE platform for NPs of all specialties. Our CE Center has become the most important educational resource for NP members and non-members, with over 31,000 registered users. In 2014 the CE Center has had an average of over 13,000 viewings and 10,000 certificates issued each month. The AANP CE Center provides national reach for its programs, all of which are based on clearly defined learning objectives, designed to address NP learning preferences.

About American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA)
Founded in 1968, the American Academy of Physician Assistants is the national professional society for PAs. It represents a rapidly growing profession of more than 95,000 certified PAs across all medical and surgical specialties in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, the majority of the U.S. territories and within the uniformed services. AAPA advocates and educates on behalf of the profession and the patients PAs serve. AAPA works to ensure the professional growth, personal excellence and recognition of PAs. It also works to enhance their ability to improve the quality, accessibility and cost-effectiveness of patient-centered healthcare. Visit and to learn more.

About Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers (CMSC)
The Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers (CMSC) is the leading educational, training, and networking organization for MS health-care professionals and researchers. The CMSC’s mission is to promote quality multiple sclerosis care through educational programming and accreditation including live and online events, research grants, technical journals and papers, and targeted advocacy efforts. The CMSC member network includes more than 7,000 international health-care clinicians and scientists committed to multiple sclerosis care as well as more than 60 Veterans Administration MS Programs and 225 MS Centers in the US, Canada, and Europe.

CMSC’s and IOMSN’s official, peer-reviewed journal, the International Journal of MS Care (IJMSC), publishes high-quality research, reviews, and consensus papers on a broad range of clinical topics of interest to MS health-care professionals, and is mailed to its membership at no charge. All IJMSC content is available at For more information on the CMSC, visit

CME Connections, LLC (formerly the Goodale-Coe Group)
CME Connections works with non-profit organizations, medical centers, and academic institutions to produce accredited CME / CE and non-accredited educational programs. We specialize in interactive, media-rich programs for the Internet, and we also develop live seminars and print-based monographs. CME Connections offers an optimum blend of project management, content organization and scriptwriting, media production, audience recruitment, and outcomes measurement—all provided in a collaborative working relationship. For more information on CME Connections offerings visit

Contact: Annie Scully, 908-824-7938,

The Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers

3 University Plaza Drive, Suite 116 Hackensack, NJ 07601

Tel: 201.487.1050 | Fax: 862.772.7275