MS Achievement Center

The Center’s Response to COVID-19
The Center remains committed to continuing our programs during the pandemic. Our goal is to help our members continue to follow healthy lifestyle habits, stay connected to one another in an educational, supportive and fun environment, and learn more about how to manage their lives and MS during this trying time.
Center staff are onsite and offering our REACH to Achieve program in person and remotely via Zoom. We are following all the recommended safety precautions including temperature and symptom screening at the door, face masks (and face shields/safety glasses for staff working in close proximity), physical distancing, frequent handwashing and disinfection of surfaces. For the latest information on all of our programs, please call the Center directly at (310) 267-4071.
Logo MS Society
  • Beyond Diagnosis - classes start January 2022 (view the flyer) and will be held online
  • Cognifitness Class - classes start in February and July 2022 (view the flyer)
  • Living Well with MS Program - classes start in March 2022 (view the flyer)
  • Exercise & MS Class - classes run June-August 2022 1-3 pm (view the flyer)
  • Free From Falls Program - classes run Mondays, October-December 2022 (view the flyer)

To learn more, please call Lisa Guerette at 310-267-4071 or email ([email protected]).

The Marilyn Hilton MS Achievement Center at UCLA is a collaborative program offered by the UCLA Department of Neurology and the Southern California & Nevada Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. The philosophy of the MS Achievement Center is that people with MS can be empowered to take control of their health and well-being with the help of educational and experiential programs. To this end, the center's programming is designed to provide wellness interventions that complement participants' medical management of their disease.

Read more about the center's work in Momentumthe magazine of the National MS Society and also the UCLA Health Vitals Signs quarterly publication for the community.

View this video to learn about Marilyn Hilton and the Hilton Family's Legacy of Generosity.


Whether you are newly diagnosed or have been living with MS for some time, we offer a program to help you achieve your wellness goals. Please see the following description of each program and the month(s) each program is held.

On this page:


REACH to Achieve Program (Ongoing)

The REACH to Achieve program is designed for people who have been living with MS for some period of time, are facing one or more life challenges related to their MS symptoms, including mobility, ability to cope, memory changes and deconditioning, and who are ready to take control and make personal changes.

In a setting of shared support, REACH to Achieve provides tools and strategies for you to improve and/or maintain your functional independence. REACH focuses on four main areas:

  1. Physical wellness: Customized fitness programs with our expert staff help members to reach individual fitness goals. Group fitness activities like yoga and tai chi also help improve or maintain functional abilities and mobility.
  2. Emotional wellness: Through our art therapy, groups and emotional health interventions, members learn to reduce stress and improve their emotional well-being.
  3. Recreation wellness: Members participate in music therapy, games, journaling, adaptive gardening, community programs and cognitive stimulation activities.
  4. Health education: Our in-house experts share information about disease management, symptom management, nutrition and general health practices to help members make optimal lifestyle and health decisions in conjunction with their personal physicians. Guest experts from UCLA and the greater community provide lectures on specialty topics throughout the year.

Members attend the program one day a week on an ongoing basis. Our program is offered on a sliding fee scale and is accessible to everyone. To take the first step toward optimizing your health and wellness, please complete the application below:
Application for REACH Program (PDF)

To contact Center staff with additional questions, please call (310) 267-4071 or email Lisa Guerette, Executive Director at: [email protected].

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Living Well with MS Program (March - May)

For those newly diagnosed with MS, the Living Well with MS program offers an integrative approach to wellness and MS that introduces participants to information, strategies and tools they can use to develop a lifestyle program that optimizes their well-being. Over the course of the 12-week program, participants will:

  • Develop a comprehensive personal fitness and nutrition program.
  • Understand and better manage MS symptoms, including fatigue and stress.
  • Develop emotional and spiritual health practices for living well with MS.
  • Increase their ability to cope with the diagnosis and the unpredictability of MS.
  • Meet others newly diagnosed with MS and develop a support network.

Living Well with MS blends interactive, online learning and activities with exercise, educational and emotional wellness sessions that are held at the Center on Saturdays in order to accommodate busy work and school schedules. The program is facilitated by Center health professionals, and delivers different program topics with targeted educational and experiential sessions such as managing stress, understanding fatigue, complementary and alternative therapies, taking control of your personal health and strategies for sustained success. Participants develop fitness practices to enhance strength, flexibility and cardiovascular endurance by engaging in a variety of educational and experiential physical health sessions, ranging from exercise to managing stress to yoga. Living Well with MS participants receive a comprehensive notebook of educational materials and handouts on a variety of exercise topics, MS education, nutrition and emotional wellness.

Download and complete your program application (PDF) and take the first step toward optimizing your health and wellness.
To contact Center staff with additional questions, please call (310) 267-4071 or email Lisa Guerette, Executive Director at: [email protected].

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Beyond Diagnosis, CogniFitness, Exercise and MS, Free From Falls and other programs

Beyond Diagnosis (January)
Beyond Diagnosis is a half-day program for those diagnosed with MS within the last two years. Join MS professionals from the Center and the National MS Society in an open conversation about MS and how wellness practices can help you live your best life with MS.

  • Through this interactive conversation participants will:
    • Have a better understanding of treatments to manage MS and its symptoms,
    • Learn how wellness practices integrate into healthy living with MS,
    • Have a chance to connect and share with others managing a new diagnosis and
    • Discover all the resources available through the National MS Society to understand and manage life with MS

Please call (310) 267-0471 or email us to inquire about our next Beyond Diagnosis program.


CogniFitness (February and July)
CogniFitness is an interactive four-week program held on Saturday mornings for individuals with MS who are experiencing mild cognitive problems. It is led by speech pathologists and provides strategies for dealing with common memory and cognitive challenges that can accompany MS including attention, memory, organization, problem solving and critical thinking skills.

Please email us to inquire about our next CogniFitness program.


Exercise and MS - An Integrated Approach to Fitness (June - August)
Exercise and MS is a 12 week program specially designed for those who can easily walk a minimum of 25 feet with or without a cane or walker. Learn how exercise improves overall wellness and also helps manage MS symptoms.

  • This educational and exercise program will help you:
    • Understand how exercise can positively impact the effects of MS.
    • Learn how to overcome obstacles to exercising.
    • Practice exercises in three key areas: Balance and Body Awareness, Functional Fitness and Relaxation, and Flexibility.
    • Create an action plan to reach your personal goals.

Please call (310) 267-4071 or email us to inquire about our next Exercise and MS program.


Free From Falls (October - November)
Free From Falls is an eight-week fall prevention program designed specifically for people with MS who are able to walk easily or without a cane, but may be at risk for falling. It is held on 8 consecutive Saturdays to accommodate busy work and school schedules.

In just eight weeks, you will

  • Gain an increased awareness of what can contribute to falls.
  • Identify strategies you can use to prevent falls in your home and community.
  • Engage in and develop a fitness plan to improve balance, endurance, strength and mobility to reduce fall risk.
  • Increase your confidence to avoid falls and to manage falls, if they do occur.

In a fun, supportive group atmosphere, expert instructors in rehabilitation, health and wellness will help you develop a personal plan to maximize your safety and well-being.
Please call (310) 267-4071 or email us to inquire about our next Free From Falls program.

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Our staff, volunteers, and board members

 

Staff and volunteers

  • Medical Director: Kevin Patel, MD
  • Executive Director: Lisa Guerette, AuD, MHA, CCC-SLP/A
  • Recreation therapist: Stacy Nonoguchi, RTC, CTRS
  • Clinical exercise specialist: Kara Deliman, M.S
  • Physical therapists: Prachi Vira, PT; Kamini Parikh, PT
  • Occupational therapist: Andrew Kesselring, OTR
  • Art therapist: Anne Galbraith, LMFT
  • Speech/language pathologist: Britta Schramm, MA, CCC-SLP
  • Adaptive Iyengar yoga teacher: Doug Dee, Ermin Cruz

MS Achievement Center Board

  • Kevin Patel, MD, Chair
  • Bruce Dobkin, MD
  • Lisa Guerette, AuD, MHA, CCC-SLP/A, Ex Officio Member
  • Julie Kaufer, JD
  • Susan Schroeder
  • Jennifer Wise
  • Geoffrey White

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Contact Us and directions

Mailing address:
Marilyn Hilton MS Achievement Center at UCLA
1000 Veteran Avenue, Suite 11-62
Box 714722
Los Angeles, CA 90095-7147

Contact information:
Phone: 310-267-4071
Fax: 310-267-4075
Email: [email protected] 

View Directions and Map (PDF)

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Volunteer and donor opportunities

Do you have a passion for wellness and special skills to share?

Please email Lisa Guerette to inquire about our volunteer opportunities.

Our center is fully supported by donations and nominal program fees.
Email us to find out how you can contribute to our efforts.

Links to National MS Society

 

Donate Today   Giving: Your gift to the Marilyn Hilton MS Achievement Center makes a difference.

 

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