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MA House Docket 2060

Well, that certainly doesn’t sound like a band name.  Neither does “An Act promoting continuity of care for multiple sclerosis treatment,” but that’s what I’ll be talking about here.  In Massachusetts, State Representative Sean Garballey (D-23rd Middlesex County) reintroduced this bill today in the State’s House of Representatives.  It needs a co-sponor or twelve.

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So, what’s in this bill?  Well, first of all, this was originally introduced prior to the outcome of the Presidential election (remember how I used the word “reintroduced”).  This bill fills in some serious coverage gaps with regards to MS disease modifying therapies (DMTs).  If you have MS (or know someone who does), then you’re probably aware that these therapies are not cheap, even with insurance. There’s a long, long list of reasons for that, but for the sake of sanity, it’s sufficient to simply point out that a majority of MS DMTs are biologics and need to be created/grown in a lab, and that takes time, training and a good deal of money.  They’re not drugs in the “generic Tylenol” kind of way.

We know that health insurance companies don’t like the word “expensive.” You’ve likely heard horror stories of cancer patients being dropped by their insurance carriers for being just that.  Some other things insurers can do is limit your treatment options, and there are some that are trying to do just that in MA. This can mean that if an MS patient gets a new job with new insurance, they could be forced to change their MS treatment, based solely on the formulary of their new insurance plan.  This is dangerous and ultimately, far more costly in the long run. In more technical terms:

“This legislation will ensure that insurance coverage for MS disease-modifying treatments is not interrupted due to non-medical insurance policy/formulary decisions.  This bill also provides that the continued coverage for the MS treatment (outside the formulary) shall not be subject to any greater deductible, coinsurance, copayments, or out-of-pocket limits than any other disease-modifying prescription drug for multiple sclerosis provided by the insurer.” –Jake Krilovich, National MS Society

Simply put, it’s a state law that would bar insurance companies from forcing MS patients to use DMTs that don’t work for them. It also bars insurance companies from essentially discriminating against an MS patient by slapping them with higher payments for their disease modifying therapy.

Want to help make sure this is passed, especially seeing as the ACA’s pre-existing conditions laws are being dismantled? Here’s what you can do.

If you live in Massachusetts

  1. Find out who your state (NOT federal) Senator and Representatives are.  If you’re not sure who they are, check out www.wheredoivotema.com.
  2. Drop them a line- call or email and ask them to support HD 2060, “An Act promoting continuity of care for multiple sclerosis treatment.” If you happen to have a personal experience with MS, go ahead and tell them.
  3. Drop Sean Garballey a line and thank him for introducing the bill.
  4. Do it again in a week or so if you haven’t heard back.

If you don’t live in Massachusetts

  1. Drop Sean Garballey a line and thank him for introducing the bill.
  2. If you think his bill would be something your state should introduce, call your state reps and see about getting them to draft a similar bill to Sean’s.
  3. Email MA reps for friends and family members who reside in MA. You’re not a resident, but you’re related to one, and they may listen to you as a result.

What happens for this year in terms of shows is up in the air, but at the very least, this is one thing we can do to make the world a slightly less dark.

A little too quiet..

It’s been fairly quiet here at Crash Safely this year, if you haven’t noticed.  So what gives?

A few things, actually.  There are really only two people behind the scenes at CS, and we’ve been doing it for five straight years.  I’ve pretty much given up my birthday for that long, so the selfish part of me would like it back (thank you very much).

Maybe not quite like this.

Maybe not quite like this.

The other thing is that I have been editing videos for the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s Casual Fridays series, and the first one happens to fall on a night I would usually book for Crash Safely. I essentially double booked myself, six months in advance.

 

By the way, you should totally go to Casual Fridays- ticket prices are reduced, there’s free food before and after, and you can mingle with orchestra members. If you sit in the “tablet” seating, you can see my work.  (You can subscribe to Casual Fridays, too!)

While I’m doing that, the Night Ridah has been called back into drumming duty with Shiny Beasts. They’re playing a ton lately, but if you haven’t seen them yet, here’s a taste:

 

Also, The Figgs are on tour! With mighty team captain Pete Hayes out with the Figgs, the Maybe Sump’ms won’t have enough time to train for the ride, let alone get the shows together.

The Figgs

So, while we won’t be seeing you for Crash Safely this year,  come see us! I think we’ve got a wide variety of options to choose from- see you soon!

 

More radio!

We haven’t even recovered for a supremely amazing night at the Midway last night, but we’ll be back on the radio tonight!

Join us with Dan Kopko from Watts as we talk Crash Safely Night 2 tonight around 11:15pm on Bay State Rock!

photo by Mike Oliver

photo by Mike Oliver

Listen online here or on 97.7 FM/  107.3 FM!

Night 1 tonight!

We’re getting the last bits ready for tonight!

Amazing music from The Phil Aiken Army, The Dents, Muck and the Mires and The Sprained Ankles…

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Plus, the chance to win:

Boston Harbor Cruises certificate for four to take the USS Constitution Cruise!

Boston Red Sox autographed baseball signed by Dustin Pedroia!

Two tickets to ANY ArtsEmerson performance in the 2015-2016 season!

A specially selected bangle set from ALEX AND ANI / CHARITY BY DESIGN!

Two chances to win 6 lbs of whole bean coffee from Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, including a specially selected set by Mike Oliver!

An after work pool party for 20 people, snacks included at Jillian’s Boston!

We’ll see you at the Midway tonight!!

Meet the bands: The Sprained Ankles

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Let’s just start this out with Tankenstein:

Yes, that’s a kazoo.  Yes, that’s a punk band.

Goofy, garage, punk.  Guaranteed good time. How can you NOT love a song about a vampire girlfriend?

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In fact, Amanda decided to wear her old school Rowdy Roddy Piper T shirt to the first night of Crash Safely because the Ankles are playing.  One-up her and wear your Macho Man Randy Savage gear!

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Meet the bands: The Dents

Who are The Dents?  Well, seeing as you asked:

Jen D’Angora (aka Jenny Dee), Vocals and Guitar. Michelle Paulhus, Vocals and Bass. Craig Adams, Guitar. Kevin Pickering, Drums.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way…

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photo by Eric Law

What do they sound like?

We’ll let the music do the talking…. here’s “Better Off”:

They’re heading to the Midway on 10/17 with the Sprained Ankles, Muck and the Mires and the Phil Aiken Army!  You don’t wanna miss this lineup!

Tickets  $10, 21+.

Did you know?

The Maybe Sump’ms already rode around NYC last weekend, but you can still donate! In fact, we could really use the help! Keep in mind that 100% of the proceeds from Crash Safely also go to same pool and help fund crucial research into MS, patient assistance programs and fellowships for MS specialists.

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In fact, ECTRIMS (the European Committee for Treatment  and Research In Multiple Sclerosis) just ended and highlighted some major research breakthroughs, including:

  • “NEDA”- No Evidence of Disease Activity as a standard of care for people with relapsing forms of MS (This has NEVER been an option before!)
  • High dose Vitamin D improving cognitive function in MS patients
  • The effect of melatonin and seasons on relapses
  • Still in clinical trials, Ocrelizumab may be the most effective MS drug, even in  hard-to- treat Primary Progressive MS

THIS is where the funds go from Crash Safely.  THIS is why we ride, why we play.

We’re on WMFO this Tues!

We’ll be guests on Skybar Lusardi‘s show  on WMFO this Tuesday at 8pm!  He’ll be spinning tunes by all of the bands involved in Crash Safely, and Amanda will be on hand with some tracks and all of the information about both nights (including the proper ways to sway the raffle in your favor).

Just don't get grounded throwing lightswitch raves beforehand.

Just don’t get grounded throwing lightswitch raves beforehand.

Listen in at 91.5 FM or online!

Update to the 10/17 show

Unfortunately, Gymnasium have had to drop off the  October 17 bill at the Midway Cafe as their drummer Jonathan was in an accident. We hope he gets better soon!!!

The other members of Gymnasium will still be attending the show and you may even get Rod to sing you something accapella if you buy him a beer first. (Don’t quote us on that.)

New set times and order are as follows:

9:00 Pm – Doors
9:15 PM – The Phil Aiken Army
10:15 PM – Muck & The Mires
11:15 PM – The Dents
12:15 AM – The Sprained Ankles

Thanks everyone and we wish Jonathan a speedy recovery!

Meet the Bands: Unnatural Axe

Do we really have to introduce, you, oh Boston music lover, to Unnatural Axe? Maybe this will jog your memory:

 

Maybe Cheetah Chrome should introduce you.

 

That’s a lot of black and white, now.

What?

What?

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Richie Parsons. Not pictured: Unnatural Axe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Axe remain an amazing punk band that you are required to state that you’ve seen at least once in your lifetime.   They’re giving you a chance to up your punk cred on 10/23, with Township, Watts and Fireking at the Middle East Upstairs.

 

Think you’ll catch ’em next time?  You’ll be waiting- this is their ONLY area show this year.

 

Bring yer whole guild!