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World Hemophilia Day Brings Attention to Access to Care

04.07.2016

Northern Michigan patients served by Northern Regional Bleeding Disorder Center

World Hemophilia Day 2016 on April 17 will focus on the theme of patient access “Treatment for All is the Vision for All.”

Around the world there is an enormous discrepancy in the level of care available to patients with a bleeding disorder. While some are diagnosed very young, and have medical care throughout their life, most patients do not. Treatment exists for those with a bleeding disorder, but without the correct care many patients still suffer debilitating pain, permanent joint damage, or death.

Ensuring that someone with a bleeding disorder is diagnosed early and is cared for using best practices is a shared responsibility. The World Hemophilia Day has been working toward the shared vision of treatment for all for more than 50 years but the support of the entire community is much needed.

Created in 1996, the World Federation of Hemophilia Humanitarian Aid Program channels donations of life-saving treatment products to people with bleeding disorders who need them all around the world. One of the federation’s goals over the next three years is to make more donated product available in developing countries, which will make humanitarian aid more predictable, and care more sustainable.

In the U.S., there are about 20,000 people diagnosed with hemophilia. The condition affects one in 5,000 male births. Hemophilia can contribute to other serious medical issues such as joint disease, heart disease, and renal disease.

In northern Michigan, the Northern Regional Bleeding Disorder Center continues to serve more than 200 bleeding disorder patients. The treatment team includes adult and pediatric hematologists, nurse practitioners, a nurse, social worker, physical therapist, pharmacist, and others.

“What we find is that the management and treatment of patients through a bleeding disorder center greatly improves outcomes,” said Michelle Witkop, D.N.P., nurse practitioner with the program.

.earn more about hemophilia and other inherited bleeding disorders.

To learn more about the Northern Regional Bleeding Disorder Center go to munsonhealthcare.org/bleedingdisorders.