News & Press

COVID-19 Update

March 18, 2020

Dear MRF community,

As our country continues to adjust to precautions enacted in response to the COVID-19 virus, I wanted to update you on how the Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) will ensure our work continues with as little disruption as possible. I also wanted to share some patient and caregiver resources you may find helpful. We want to encourage the melanoma community to stay involved, remain engaged and help us continue to move towards a cure for melanoma.

Following the recommendations of local and national health authorities, the MRF team is currently working remotely. However, operations have continued without interruption and our community can expect the same support resources, educational information and advocacy opportunities as before – with new resources on the way!

In accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, in-person events planned for April and May have been rescheduled. Please note the following changes and update your calendars accordingly. Unless noted, all venues will remain the same.

Galas:

For any questions about the MRF Gala program, please email galas@melanoma.org.

Miles for Melanoma:

For any questions about the Miles for Melanoma program, please email milesformelanoma@melanoma.org.

Symposia:

  • The CURE OM Symposium will now be held in Fall 2020 with a new date confirmed in the near future.
  • The Columbus, OH Patient Symposium will be postponed with a new date confirmed in the near future.
  • The Philadelphia, PA Patient Symposium is cancelled and will return in 2021.
  • The Chapel Hill, NC Patient Symposium is cancelled and will return in 2021.
  • The Los Angeles Patient Symposium is cancelled and will return in 2021.
  • All other symposia will proceed as scheduled.

For questions about upcoming patient symposia or other educational programs, please email education@melanoma.org.

What you can do now:

Even as we practice social distancing, there are still many ways to get involved, stay connected and access the resources you may find helpful in the coming days.

Patient and Caregiver Support Resources:

  • Find daily updates on coronavirus precautions and special considerations for people with cancer or other underlying health conditions from our partners at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO).
  • If financial resources are a concern, explore the many financial assistance programs that are available to melanoma patients and caregivers.
  • Need to talk? Connect with others on the MRF Patient Forum, speak with professional counselors at the Cancer Support Community or find one-on-one support with Imerman Angels. If you have a specific, medically based question about a melanoma diagnosis or treatment, email the MRF’s Ask a Nurse program at askanurse@melanoma.org. This resource is available 24/7, and you can expect a personalized response in 72 hours or less.

Stay involved:

  • The MRF Education Institute is where up-to-date webinars, courses and recordings on melanoma prevention, diagnosis and treatment can be found. Educational materials can also be downloaded and shared electronically to ensure you always have access to the information you need.
  • View over a dozen on-demand webinars on topics including treatment side effects, genetic mutations and genomic testing, melanoma brain metastases and more. View animated patient videos, take an online course or even become a Certified Melanoma Educator.
  • Take action! Laws and policies that affect the melanoma community are currently being debated everywhere from city councils to the halls of Congress. Follow some of the current legislation we’re tracking and contact your lawmakers to urge their support.
  • Host a CommUNITY Fundraiser to increase awareness and raise life-saving funds. Get creative and host an online experience or share your story as a Facebook Fundraiser. The MRF can also provide toolkits and checklists to start planning now for an in-person event later this year. Need some inspiration? Check out 9-year-old Bryson’s penny drive or hit the trails with stage 4 melanoma survivor Fred as he races to fund a cure with Team Melanoma.

What comes next?

The entire MRF team continues to closely monitor the evolving situation and we will follow the recommendations of public health officials to best protect the health of our community and the general public. If further schedule adjustments or adaptations become necessary, we will share that information immediately. The safety and well-being of our community, staff, partners and volunteers will always be of the utmost importance.

While daily life may look significantly different in the days ahead, together we will navigate our way back to “normal.” At the MRF, we are inspired daily by the strength of this community and the ways that you find to support one another.

Please continue to take care of yourselves and your loved ones, and don’t hesitate to reach out if the MRF can be of any assistance.

 

Sincerely,

Kyleigh Signature.jpg

Kyleigh LiPira, MBA
CEO, Melanoma Research Foundation