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Multiple Sclerosis Centers of Excellence


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About the Multiple Sclerosis Centers of Excellence

Our Mission

  • Improve the healthcare for Veterans with Multiple Sclerosis (MS.)
  • Improve coordination between VA medical centers by developing an informal network within the VA.
  • Provide resources to VA providers through a collaborative approach to clinical care, education, research, and informatics.

Our Goals

The MS Centers of Excellence are dedicated to further the understanding of the disease, its impact on Veterans, and effective treatments to help manage MS symptoms. By partnering with Veterans, caregivers, and health care providers we hope to minimize disease impairment and increase the quality of life for Veterans with MS.

Our goals are to improve the quality and consistency of health services delivered to Veterans with MS across the country. Using a population-based management model, we support providers and Veterans by . . .

  • Maintaining a national MS Data Repository of Veterans with MS that we use in our own research and making this data available to other MS researchers,
  • Impacting services at the point-of-care using electronic medical record tools,
  • Developing face-to-face and distant education and training options for health professionals and Veterans to facilitate evidence-based delivery of services.

Our Programs

The MS Centers of Excellence are organized around four functional cores:

1. Clinical Care

Improve the clinical care of Veterans with MS by fostering an integrated hub–and–spoke care system within the entire VHA.

2. Research and Development

Conduct, disseminate, and apply research relevant to health needs of Veterans with MS using pre-clinical research on novel therapies and to pilot local and national clinical trials.

3. Education and Training

Provide a national program of MS education for VHA healthcare providers, Veterans and caregivers. Using a specialized post-doctoral fellowship training program continue to develop expertise in MS health care delivery.

4. Informatics and Telemedicine

Employ state-of-the-art informatics, telemedicine technology, and the MSCoE web site to enhance strategies and practices of MS healthcare delivery.

Program Directors

MSCoE, West Director

MSCoE, West Co-Director

Jodie K. Haselkorn, MD, MPH
VA Puget Sound Health Care System
Seattle, Washington
Professor, Department of Rehabilitation Medicine
Adjunct Professor, Department of Epidemiology
Affiliate Professor, Department of Medical History and Ethics
School of Medicine
University of Washington

Dennis Bourdette, MD
Portland VA Medical Center
Portland, Oregon
Chairman, Department of Neurology
Professor, Departments of Neurology and Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine
Roy & Eulalia Swank Family Research Professor, Department of Neurology
Oregon Health & Science University

MSCoE, East Director


Christopher T. Bever, Jr. MD, MBA
Associate Chief of Staff, Research and Development
VA Maryland Health Care System
Baltimore, Maryland
Professor, Departments of Neurology
Affiliate Professor, Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics, and Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Sciences
School of Medicine
University of Maryland


Staff of the Multiple Sclerosis Centers of Excellence