Cultivating the multiple sclerosis workforce of the future
International Journal of MS Care
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Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a complex neurologic disorder that affects people with ever-changing needs. The MS health-care field has entered an era of exponential knowledge growth in which better understanding of the immunologic dysregulation of the disease has translated into an expanding array of treatment options. It is estimated that, if it has not already, within the next decade the demands of a growing MS patient population will outstrip the number of professionals dedicated to the management of this chronic, lifelong disease. Therefore, there is a pressing need to attract and retain clinicians in this dynamic field. In response to this need, the Foundation of the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers organized a 2-day colloquium, a Mentorship Forum, on January 23-24, 2015, bringing together talented internal medicine and neurology trainees from across North America with an interest in MS and neuroimmunology. This article highlights the rationale for the MS Mentorship Forum, its structure and content, and its outcomes. We believe that the stage has been set to interest young, promising clinicians in learning more about MS and to encourage them to consider a career in this field. In so doing, we hope to contribute to the development of the next generation of MS experts to make a palpable difference in the lives of those affected by MS.