Emmaus Takes ‘Sideline Sickle Cell’ Campaign to Annual SCD Family and Educational Event

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by Mary Chapman |

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Emmaus Life Sciences, accompanied by the Emmy Award-winning National Football League (NFL) broadcaster Solomon Wilcots, took its Sideline Sickle Cell campaign to the recent 6th Annual Sickle Cell Disease Patient & Family Educational Symposium that took place in Plano, Texas.

Hosted the Sickle Cell Association of Texas Mark Thomas Foundation, the As One Foundation and the Carol’s Promise Sickle Cell Foundation, the event is touted as the sole national sickle cell disease (SCD) convention created, designed, and run by its patient and family community.

There, Emmaus led a series of activities and discussions at the Life Sciences convention booth. In addition, Wilcots, who has partnered with the Sideline campaign, was scheduled to lead an educational presentation at the symposium’s Young Adult Reception. Joined by Charles Stark, Emmaus senior vice president of research and development, the event was billed as a chance for young patients to learn more about SCD.

Focusing on relationships within the SCD community, the symposium’s theme this year was “Sickle Siblings: Bonded By Blood.” The agenda focused on those living with SCD becoming “expert patients” while learning to advocate and educate, and on encouraging themselves and each other.

Developed by patients, caregivers and supporters, event topics include “Parenting Issues from Birth to Adult,” “The Science of Sickle Cell,” “Sickle Cell Mental Health,” and “Sickle Cell and College Life.”

The educational, awareness-raising Sideline Sickle Cell campaign, launched in April, targets the entire sickle cell disease (SCD) community — patients, physicians and caregivers. It includes a Wilcots-led media tour and a myriad of activities and town hall-like gatherings in a growing roster of cities, including New York, Miami, Atlanta, and Los Angeles.

Those interested may follow the campaign @EmmausLife-Sci on Twitter, and register here for updates, including meeting sites. Wilcots asks that patients and supporters share stories using the hashtags #SidelineSickleCell and #NMHM19. A former NFL player and current broadcaster for SiriusXM and Sky Sports, Wilcots has seen the effect of SCD on friends, relatives and teammates.

Emmaus, a biopharmaceutical company, is the developer of Endari (L-glutamine oral powder, called Xyndari in Europe). Endari was approved in 2017 as a treatment for SCD in patients 5 and older in the U.S. The first FDA-approved sickle cell treatment in some 20 years, it is used to lower acute disease complications.