On September 9, 2010, the International Myeloma Foundation signed a cooperative agreement with the Chinese Health Promotion Foundation (CHPF), an agency that operates under the Chinese Ministry of Health, to promote awareness of myeloma in China and to encourage measures to prevent and combat the disease. This agreement substantially expands IMF’s presence in Asia and will support the thousands of myeloma patients in China.
The agreement was signed by Dr. Shuzhong Bai, Chairman of the CHPF, and by Daniel Navid, Senior Global Analyst for the IMF. A ceremony in Beijing to mark the occasion was hosted by Dr. Yingming Chang, Secretary General of the CHPF. Dr.Xiaojun Huang, Chairman of the Chinese Hematology Association and Hematology Society of the Chinese Medical Association, and Dr. Wenming Chen, also attended the signature ceremony. Both are members of the International Myeloma Working Group, an organization of international myeloma experts organized by the IMF.
In a message to the ceremony, IMF’s President Susie Novis noted that "Chinese health authorities clearly recognize the significance of myeloma in their country, and we are honored and gratified that they acknowledge the role the IMF can play in supporting patients, disseminating information and encouraging research,"
On behalf of the CHPF, Dr. Zhao Yanling, Head of International Relations noted, "The mission of the CHPF is to bring together Chinese medical experts to raise the health standard of the Chinese people, and we can think of no better partner to work with us on behalf of myeloma patients than the IMF."
Initial goals of the agreement include:
- Developing a scientific advisory committee of Chinese myeloma experts
- Convening training programs for Chinese doctors
- Compiling data about the incidence and costs of myeloma in China
- Developing Chinese language materials about myeloma for distribution in print and via website
Longer-range goals of this joint effort include establishing a Myeloma Patient Society in China and hosting a regional conference on myeloma for health care experts in Asia.