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Multiple Sclerosis Centers of Excellence

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Family Caregivers / Care Partners - Taking Care of Yourselves!

Caregiver with MS Veteran

Family caregivers and Care Partners are very important to our Veterans with MS. Taking care of yourself is as important as taking care of your loved one with MS. If you aren’t healthy, it's harder to provide good care.

The website links below give tips on well deserved respite time (taking a break!). All Veterans and Caregivers are eligible for 30 days of respite time per year.

If you need to talk to someone about caregiving, call the VA Caregiver Support Line at (855) 260-3274. A Caregiver coordinator can tell you about benefits for you and your Veteran with MS.

Multiple Sclerosis Caregivers - News and Articles

Caregiver Chronicles front page image

Emotional Changes in the Veteran with MS: Tips for the MS Caregiver

By Margaret Kazmierski, MSW, LCSW-C, MSCS and Alicia Sloan, MPH, MSW, LICSW

Many people diagnosed with MS say that the emotional changes are some of the most challenging symptoms to cope with. This can have a profound emotional effect on the Caregiver. If you understand how MS affects your loved one emotionally it may help you as you cope with your own feelings and the stress and challenges in your role as a Caregiver. > Read the article


Website Resources for MS Caregivers

We have links to the major organizations that support MS and Caregivers / Care Partners. These organizations support research, education and provide a variety of services for people with MS and their loved ones.

Past Presentations from the MSCOE monthly Caregiver Support and Education Call

MSCOE Caregiver Research

Interested in what research says about MS Caregivers? Check out our MSCOE studies involving VA MS Caregivers!

Non-VA Caregiver Resources specific to Multiple Sclerosis

  • National MS Society (NMSS) - NMSS supports MS research, provides programs and services for people with MS and their families and care partners, provides professional education programs, and advocates for MS worldwide. Their mission: To end the devastating effects of MS. NMSS has a 50-state network of chapters.
  • Multiple Sclerosis International Federation (MSIF) - MSIF was established in 1967 as an international body linking the activities of MS societies around the world. It publishes a professional journal: “MS In Focus”. It provides information on relationships, intimacy, and family life...very important issues related to caregiving!

More Website Resources for Caregivers



Monthly MS Caregiver Calls

code: 43157#

April 27, 2015
11am PT/2pm ET

Topic: Easing Pain in MS for Your Loved Ones and Yourself

Join us on monthly conference calls for Families and Caregivers of Veterans with MS.
Sponsored by the VA MS Centers of Excellence. 

4th Monday of every month
(except May & Dec)
11am (PST)
12pm (MT)
1pm (CT)
2pm (ET)
1 hour

Oct 27    Spasticity
Nov 24    OT
Dec 22    no call

Jan 26    Mood
Feb 23    Various
Mar 23    Mood
Apr 27     Pain
June 22   Disaster
July 27    TBD
Aug 24    TBD
Sep 28    Diet
Oct 26     TBD
Nov 23    Risk

past presentations

Presenters & Facilitators

Description: Maggie Kazmierski
Maggie Kazmierski
VA Baltimore
Baltimore, MD

Description: Alicia Sloan
Alicia Sloan
VA Puget Sound
Seattle, WA

Description: Jan Spencer
Jan Spencer
VA Portland
Portland, OR