International Myeloma Foundation
The International Myeloma Foundation (IMF) is a non-profit organization serving patients with myeloma, a cancer of plasma cells in the bone marrow. The IMF also provides support and information for family members, caregivers of myeloma patients, physicians and nurses. The organization focuses on research, education, support and advocacy related to the disease. The IMF is based in North Hollywood, California, and, according to its 2009 annual report, has a membership of 195,000 people in 113 countries.
The IMF was founded in 1990 by three people - Brian Novis, who was diagnosed with multiple myeloma at age 33, his wife Susie Novis and his physician Brian G.M. Durie, M.D. Brian Novis succumbed to myeloma in 1992. The work of the foundation continues with Susie Novis serving as foundation President, and Dr. Durie as Chair of the Board of Directors.
Programs for patients and caregivers include educational seminars, a patient hotline, multilingual publications and government advocacy. In 2008, the IMF introduced a web-based Personal Information Management application to help myeloma patients and caregivers simplify and record care and treatment.
There are approximately 20,000 new patients diagnosed with myeloma each year. The IMF is involved in a variety of research efforts, which include maintaining a myeloma gene and tissue bank project and convening an international working group of myeloma researchers to collaborate on a broad range of myeloma projects. In 1994, the IMF established the Brian D. Novis Research Grants program to support both junior and senior investigators.
The organization holds its major fundraising event, the annual Comedy Celebration benefitting the Peter Boyle Memorial fund, in November of each year. In the United States, IMF is categorized as a 501(c) non-profit organization by the IRS.
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