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Alli Walsh, Social Media Strategist
Started as a European campaign to raise public awareness of rare diseases and their impact on patients and their families, Rare Disease Day has become a global phenomenon with over 80 participating countries. It is celebrated toward the end of February.
The US got involved in 2009 with a coalition of supporters including the National Institute of Health (NIH) and other government entities.
Supplementally Speaking joins the NIH in helping raise awareness of rare diseases that may impact you, a loved-one, a friend or community member.
According to RareDiseaseDay.us, a rare disease is any disease, disorder, illness or condition affecting fewer than 200,000 people in the US. They affect 1 in 10 Americans, or more than 30 million people, collectively. 50% of rare diseases affect children.
To look at this another way, consider that nearly 86 million Americans suffer from cardiovascular disease,1 yet there are more Americans who live with a rare disease than ALL of those who have HIV, Heart Disease or Stroke.2
80% of rare diseases have identified genetic origins while others are the result of bacterial or viral infections, allergies and environmental causes or are degenerative and proliferative.2
There are at least 7,000 rare diseases—and they’re very diverse in nature, making them difficult to quickly (and accurately) diagnose. What’s more, 95% of rare diseases are without an FDA approved treatment or therapy.2
Visit the National Organization for Rare Disorders to learn how to take action locally. You can donate money or time through participation in an educational or running event.
1 CDC Foundation.2 RareDiseaseDay.us.3 Mitoaction.org.4 Boston Children's Hospital.5 Rarediseases.org.
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Combined Insurance Company of America (Chicago, IL Illinois) is a leading provider of individual supplemental accident, disability, health, and life insurance products and a Chubb company. With a tradition of nearly 100 years of success, we have an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau and are one of Ward’s Top 50® Performing Life-Health Insurance Companies. Combined Insurance is also the number one Military Friendly® Employer in the over $1B revenue category for 2019 by VIQTORY. This is the company’s eighth consecutive year on the top 10 list and fifth consecutive year in the top 5—Combined Insurance was previously named the number one Military Friendly® Employer in the nation for 2015 and 2016. In New York, products are underwritten by Combined Life Insurance Company of New York (Latham, NY).
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