WHIPPANY, N.J., Feb. 28, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Bayer HealthCare is joining the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) and others in raising awareness of Rare Disease Day, which is being celebrated today around the world.
Rare Disease Day 2014 activities by Bayer will include participation in state government awareness events and employee engagement via the NORD "Handprints Across America" photo gallery.
"While great strides have been made in medical research in recent years, there are still millions of Americans who have rare diseases for which there is no treatment or cure," said NORD President and CEO Peter L. Saltonstall. "The purpose of Rare Disease Day is to focus a spotlight on the challenges of rare diseases, such as diagnosis delay and lack of access to medically necessary care, and to reaffirm our commitment as a society to improving the lives of those affected."
A rare disease is defined as one that affects fewer than 200,000 Americans. There are nearly 7,000 such diseases affecting nearly 30 million Americans, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
For more than 20 years, Bayer has provided research in the area of rare diseases to help identify potential new therapies. This research has resulted in treatments for rare conditions such as, class II and IIII pulmonary hypertension, multiple sclerosis, hemophilia A, hepatiocellular carcinoma, renal cell carcinoma and gastrointestinal tumors.
"Bayer HealthCare is among the world's leading companies in the fight against severe, chronic, and life-threatening diseases," said Pamela A. Cyrus, Vice President and Head, U.S. Medical Affairs, Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals. "At Bayer, our experience lies in developing treatment options for these patients, as well as in providing corresponding support programs for them and their care givers."
Rare Disease Day was launched in Europe in 2008 by EURORDIS, the organization representing rare disease patients in Europe. It is now observed in more than 65 nations, and is sponsored in the U.S. by NORD.
In the U.S., the coalition supporting Rare Disease Day includes patient organizations, NIH and other government entities, medical researchers, hospitals and academic institutions, and pharmaceutical companies developing treatments for rare diseases.
About Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals Inc.
Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals Inc. is the U.S.-based pharmaceuticals business of Bayer HealthCare LLC, a subsidiary of Bayer AG. Bayer HealthCare is one of the world's leading, innovative companies in the healthcare and medical products industry, and combines the activities of the Animal Health, Consumer Care, Medical Care, and Pharmaceuticals divisions. As a specialty pharmaceutical company, Bayer HealthCare provides products for General Medicine, Hematology, Neurology, Oncology and Women's Healthcare. The company's aim is to discover and manufacture products that will improve human health worldwide by diagnosing, preventing and treating diseases.
Bayer® and the Bayer Cross® are registered trademarks of Bayer.
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SOURCE Bayer HealthCare