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Thread: Battle to find a cure for spinal cord injuries is "winnable" -- Canadian quadriplegic nears completion of global fundraising drive

  1. #1

    Battle to find a cure for spinal cord injuries is "winnable" -- Canadian quadriplegic nears completion of global fundraising drive

    Battle to find a cure for spinal cord injuries is "winnable" -- Canadian quadriplegic nears completion of global fundraising drive

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    Story Filed: Tuesday, October 16, 2001 6:03 AM EST

    MONTREAL, Oct 16, 2001 (Canada NewsWire via COMTEX) -- 'Round the World Challenge fundraiser Mike Nemesvary says the battle to find a cure for spinal cord injuries is "winnable." The 40-year-old quadriplegic Canadian's comments came as he was welcomed at Montreal city hall by Mayor Pierre Bourque and later as more than 3,000 well-wishers had the opportunity to greet him at a fundraising rally in a downtown Montreal shopping concourse. Now on the home stretch of his 18- country fundraising mission, the three-time World Cup freestyle skiing champion and budding movie stuntman says the key to effective treatment of spinal cord injuries is access to emergency medical care, rehabilitation and research funds.

    "Seconds can literally make the difference between life-long paralysis and full mobility," says Mike Nemesvary, who was joined at the noon-hour fundraising rally by three-time Paralympic Games gold medallist Chantal Benoit. "Access to emergency medical treatment, rehabilitation and technology is a life or death proposition for spinal cord injury victims and can make a world of difference in terms of their quality of life."

    "We know that healthy nerve cells adjacent to an injury site begin to degenerate within seconds of an accident," says Nemesvary. "What's most exciting is that we have found ways to stop cell death and to regenerate nerve cells. Now, what we urgently need, are the funds for people like Dr. Serge Rossignol, Director of the Centre for Research in Neurological Sciences at the Universite de Montreal, to complete the lab work and to transfer that research into treatment."

    Nemesvary's 'Round the World Challenge has taken him to hospitals, rehabilitation centres and research facilities on four continents. He has met several victims of war - notably in Iran and Pakistan - during his 43,000- kilometre journey at the controls of his specially equipped SUV.

    "We must prepare now to provide emergency treatment and care for spinal cord injury victims, whether they are victims of war or of accident."

    Nemesvary is being supported in his global fundraising mission to become the first quadriplegic to drive around the world unassisted by sponsors including the Government of Canada, We Care Home Health Services, Minto Developments, and by global sponsor, Pfizer Canada.

    "We are very proud to welcome Mike to Pfizer Canada's home in Montreal as he nears the end of his amazing round-the-world odyssey," said Jean-Michel Halfon, President and CEO, Pfizer Canada Inc. "Mike is living proof of what technology and new attitudes by and towards people with mobility impairments can do to improve their quality of life. He has thrown to all of us an important challenge to integrate the disabled and to work to find the cures that will improve their lives even more. It has been inspiring for all of us at Pfizer to follow his progress and see the difference he is making in people's lives."

    Funds raised through the 'Round the World Challenge are dedicated to spinal cord injury rehabilitation and research in Canada and will be administered in conjunction with the Canadian Paraplegic Association. Public donations can be made through the RWC Web site www.roundtheworldchallenge.org, by telephone to (613) 274-7955 or through any office of the Canadian Paraplegic Association.

    Paralysed from the chest down as the result of a trampoline accident in 1985, Mike Nemesvary began his global mission to raise awareness and funds for spinal cord injury research and rehabilitation on March 20th, in Ottawa. His seven month-long tour concludes on October 23 at a public ceremony in Ottawa, on Parliament Hill. The 'Round the World Challenge's drive for a cure and care for spinal cord injuries has been endorsed by disabled activists such as actor Christopher Reeve and wheelchair athlete Rick Hansen

  2. #2
    Senior Member DA's Avatar
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    maybe i read this too fast, but it sounds to be he for acute injuries only.

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