Biogen Idec and Gretchen Rubin Unveil MS BlueprintTM, a New Online Tool to Help People with Multiple Sclerosis Attain Personal Goals


PRESS RELEASE developed with guidance from MS organizations

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. Living with a chronic condition like multiple sclerosis (MS) can be overwhelming for individuals and caregivers who have to balance the challenges of everyday life and work while juggling regular doctors’ visits and medications. To support people living with MS, Biogen Idec (NASDAQ:BIIB) has launched MS Blueprint™, a new program that encourages those impacted by MS to focus on activities that may bring joy to their lives every day. By visiting, people can set goals, create personalized MS Blueprints, and take small steps toward a more positive life.

MS Blueprint was inspired by happiness expert Gretchen Rubin’s approach to creating a more contented life, which she details in her New York Times best-selling book, The Happiness Project. As program ambassador, Gretchen is sharing her own tips and advice for getting the most enjoyment out of each day, and hopes to motivate those impacted by MS to address their challenging circumstances, focus on what makes them happy, and live in the present.

“Much like my happiness project has allowed me to focus on the positive and bring more joy to my life, the MS Blueprint program is designed to do the same for the MS community,” said Gretchen Rubin. “I believe every small step—including the activities achieved through MS Blueprint—is a victory toward living a more enjoyable life. When you feel every day reflects how you want your life to be, that’s when you’re truly happiest.”

The International Organization of Multiple Sclerosis Nurses (IOMSN), Can Do MS, and the Multiple Sclerosis Foundation (MSF) helped guide the development of this MS-specific program. MS Blueprint features a variety of themes, such as Mind & Spirit and Heart & Home, with activities that can be customized to individual goals and preferences. Whether the goal is to reduce stress or to make more time for loved ones, MS Blueprint may help the community seek the most out of each day and not let MS define them.

“IOMSN contributed to the development of the MS Blueprint because we believe in an overall wellness approach to caring for people living with MS,” said Megan R. Weigel, DNP, ARNP-c, MSCN, President Elect of the International Organization of Multiple Sclerosis Nurses (IOMSN). “We know firsthand that everyone’s experiences living with MS are different, and we encourage each individual to develop their own customized MS Blueprints with activities that are right for them, to suit their specific wants and needs.”

MS is a chronic, often disabling disease of the central nervous system, which is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerves. Symptoms may be mild, moderate, or severe, ranging from numbness in the limbs to paralysis or loss of vision. Approximately 400,000 Americans are living with MS.

By regularly visiting the MS Blueprint website, those impacted by MS can continue to set new goals, create new MS Blueprints, and contribute their suggestions for themes and activities they would like to see added to the site. In addition to the personalized activity plans, the website features frequently asked questions about living with MS, and a blog from Gretchen on how to incorporate happiness into your daily routine.

About MS Blueprint

MS Blueprint was inspired by happiness expert Gretchen Rubin’s approach to creating a more enjoyable life. Developed with the help of the MS advocacy community, the program encourages people impacted by MS to set personal goals and to create activity plans, called MS Blueprints, filled with fun activities to help them attain a more positive life. By visiting, people can select activities tailored to what interests them from a variety of themes: Mind & Spirit, Body & Wellness, Community & Friendship, and Heart & Home. Whether they include activities like playing a board game or taking a walk, the personalized MS Blueprints may guide the community to a more enjoyable life with MS. Our program partners have been compensated for their participation in the MS Blueprint program.

About Biogen Idec

Through cutting-edge science and medicine, Biogen Idec discovers, develops and delivers to patients worldwide innovative therapies for the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, hematologic conditions and autoimmune disorders. Founded in 1978, Biogen Idec is the world’s oldest independent biotechnology company and patients worldwide benefit from its leading multiple sclerosis and innovative hemophilia therapies. For product labeling, press releases and additional information about the Company, please visit

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