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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Community Clinics, Health

Mission: MGA of WPA addresses the medical, social and emotional needs of persons affected by Myasthenia Gravis and disseminates educational information to persons with Myasthenia Gravis, their families, the medical community and the general public.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 706 people with MG and their families

Programs:

The Myasthenia Gravis Treatment & Advocacy Center aims to provide the best medical care, in one central location, from health care professionals who specialize in MG. The neurologists who staff the Treatment Center are experts in MG and they guide the patient’s entire treatment which can include: medication, surgery, plasmapheresis, and other therapies.

The Center offers patient-centered care coordination provided primarily through a Nurse. The nurse is accessible to all patients and is capable of answering questions, resolving medical problems. She also facilitates patient assistance programs (prescriptions, transportation, etc); addresses general concerns; manages the Treatment Center schedule; coordinates the patient’s care with his/her PCP, Endocrinologist, Rheumatologist, and other health care providers; as well as preauthorizing testing and prescriptions with third party vendors including insurancecompanies, Medicare and Medicaid.

Community Stories

14 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with MG the day before Thanksgiving 2013. It was one of the best days of my life - I found out what was actually wrong with me. I told the doctor that he gave me my life back. Now I can start to live. The clinic and their staff have been wonderful throughout the entire process. They are always there to answer questions and to lend support when needed. They are part of my family. I don't know where I would be without them.

Review from The Pittsburgh Foundation

Client Served

Rating: 5

I love the MGA @ AGH they help me so much, they are like Family, No matter what I ask of them they always come threw for me. I have been in AGH alot latley, they even come down to see how I am doing and if I have a problem with meds, they are on top of that too.Some times when you are in hospital and they are changing shifts and you need your pills at that time they wait, I had Jenny come all the way down to the floor I was on and explain, that the pills have to be given on time. even if the nurse whom is leaving her shift could give them to me early. Michelle would come down and give me reading information, to explain things that I did not understand. My father had MG, and where he lived at the time they kept miss understanding what he had untill he was sent to AGH and Mysathenia Gravis was then helping, I also have a first cousin with it same thing wrong dignosis untill she came to MHA. I don't know what I would do without them.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed with MG one year after retirement. My next door neighbor had worked at Mercy as a nurse and told me about the clinic. What a difference a clinic setting made in my treatment and my life. It is so easy to call and get help, ask questions, find information and just to be reassured that you are ok. The staff is trained to deal with the many problems that an MG patients experiences and if they can give you and answer immediately, they call back with the answer. I am so thankful for the MG clinic and all the staff!

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband, John Hendzel, lived 41 years with Myasthenia Gravis. He was diagnosed at the age of 25. He was immediately referred to M.G. clinic of Western Pa. in Pgh. Pa. His treatment and care were the best that anyone could hope for. The Doctors meet all his needs and Mercy Hospital saved his life numerous times. M.G.A. also helped me to understand and cope with this disability. Many thanks to the Staff. Sincerely, Carol Hendzel

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have only been associated with MGA OF WPA for about 3 years. Fortunately I did not get MG until later in life so have not had to deal with so many issues as those much younger. But at any age, I have learned that working with an MG patient is a very personal, one-on-one experience. There is no "one size fits all" for MG. Being older, I have other ailments creeping up on me that need to be worked around MG and the many meds one must take to contain this disease. The head nurse has helped me make so many decisions and has always taken as much time necessary to reassure me during times of doubt. Although I do not live in the area and have to travel some distance, it has been worth it to make MGA OF WPA my main place for doctoring. The doctor who has treated me has made special arrangements at times when I felt particularly vulnerable and needed guidance. When I've had questions, he has returned my calls quickly. I don't think I would have learned as much or as quickly about MG had I not found this association because, living in a rural area, there are few doctors who are as learned as the ones I've worked with in WPA.

Client Served

Rating: 5

I first came to the MGA of WPA nearly 29 years ago (I am a month shy of 40). Had it not been for the caring staff and wonderful patient program that they have, my life might have turned out very differently. My formative years were very difficult emotionally and physically due to the diagnosis. However, the MGA, through staff and other patients, taught me coping skills and showed me different avenues for my life's direction. Had I been diagnosed without the support of so many people in my same situation, my quality of life would have been greatly diminished. I hope that they will continue to be there for everyone in need, but in particularly for the children with the disease. Many faces have come and gone, but the compassionate spirit remains the same. What a blessing to have these people in our lives!

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have been served by MGA for decades and the services of the agency are responsible for sustaining me through multiple exacerbations. MGA, through their nurse advocate, specializing physicians, educational literature and patient support systems works to turn disability into DIFability, becoming differently able. I was taught how to manage differently, including utilizing survival skills, in order to minimize crises. MGA has been a life gift to me.

Client Served

Rating: 4

I was diagnosed with MG very early in life and without the help of physicians, staff and other patients dedicated to helping those with myasthenia graivs I would have been dead. The early diagnosis and care, information and social services from this agency, for me and my family, we would not have known what to do. During the years I have counceled others patients and talked to many medical personnel to generate public awareness of this little known muscle weakening disorder. MGA of WPA has been a God-send in my life and I pray that they continue with the good and important work that they are doing.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I was diagnosed when I was 46 years old. Reading about MG and learning that it is life-threatening was terrifying to me. I searched for more information and found the MGA of Western PA. This organization was truly a God send to me. I learned the truth about my disease and the many treatments available. I then became very involved in volunteering for the organization. I have served two nine-year terms on the board and I have served five years as president. Being a person with MG and serving on the board have shown me the value of this fine organization. I also served a three-year term on the National Board of the MG Foundation. I am a true believer in the value that this organization provides.

Board Member

Rating: 5

The Myasthenia Gravis Association of Western PA "is" and "has been" a true beacon of hope those afflicted with MG. The diagnosis of an MG patient is extremely hard and tremendously frustrating for their families. Once diagnosed, MGAofWPA really steps to the plate! From Education, Social Work, Clinic, Medication, and Outreach, ... MG provides a real soup to nuts all embracing oasis for the MG patient and their families. It is the people of the MGAofWPA who truly make a difference! Treating patients like real people while providing valuable and needed services is key to this non-profit. The MGAofWPA people truly make the difference! Frankly, I not only speak as a Board Member, but as a family member of an MG patient. My mother passed away with MG, but sought and found great comfort in being able to avail herself and our family of the MGAofWPA services. There was always someone to talk with who fully understood what was happening to her on a daily basis. The peace of mind such phone calls and visits provided truly helped to make my mother's quality of life much more tolerable! It is with a sense of knowing what a real difference MGAofWPA makes in its patients and families on a day-to-day basis that I am truly proud to write this review. Without question, MGAofWPA should receive the highest rating of any non-profit organization - anywhere!