World Arthritis Day
You can help NRAS raise awareness of rheumatoid arthritis this World Arthritis Day (Friday 12th October 2012) by changing your Facebook, Twitter or other social network profile picture to the NRAS logo for the day. We hope as many of you will be able to get involved with this simple but effective way of spreading the word about RA!
to download the logo and upload it on your social media profiles.
To ensure all of the logo is visible when you upload it, click 'Edit Profile Picture', then 'Edit Thumbnail' and tick the 'Scale to fit' box and 'Save' (as shown in the image below).
Responsibility Deal Results
The Responsibility Deal consultation had nearly 700 responses so thank you to those who took part. We have published the document as part of World Arthritis Day (12th October 2012).
to read the Responsibility Deal and to sign our e-petition.
The Arthritis & Musculoskeletal Alliance (ARMA) calls for action on World Arthritis Day 2012
ARMA is pleased to announce the launch of their new Manifesto for transforming the quality of life of people with musculoskeletal disorders in the UK.
to go to the ARMA manifesto.
Waving for Arthritis
We are also promoting the Eular campaign to 'Wave for Arthritis'. Upload your pictures and videos of you waving onto the World Arthritis Day website now and help them to reach the aspiration of capturing 100,000 people waving their support for people with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs).
to take part in this great campaign.
In 2011 NRAS and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy collaborated on a new UK-wide report for World Arthritis Day, published on 12 October 2011, to fit in with the theme of ‘move to improve’. The report looked at adherence to clinical guidelines for the use of physiotherapy in the treatment of RA. The research consisted of a wide-ranging literature review about the medical evidence and public policy framework governing the use of physiotherapy in the treatment of the disease and a national survey of NRAS members. The results were unambiguous. Shockingly, 32.2% of respondents waited over a year for a physiotherapy referral after being diagnosed with RA, while 31% had never been referred at all. This is despite the fact that clinical guidelines across the UK, which set out best practice for the treatment of the disease, state that all people with RA should have access to a physiotherapist, working as part of a multidisciplinary team, with regular review. The report attracted national media coverage in the Telegraph and the Daily Mail and was covered in some trade press. The report spurred a number of politicians to table parliamentary questions about the subject and an early day motion was tabled, with close to 50 politicians signing it so far.
A EDM 2221 was tabled on 11 October 2011
Primary sponsor: Riordan, Linda
Sponsors: Peter Bottomley, Mark Durkan, Andrew George, Julian Lewis, Bob Russell
That this House notes the importance of World Arthritis Day on 12 October 2011 in raising awareness of musculoskeletal diseases including rheumatoid arthritis (RA); welcomes the 2011 theme Move to Improve which exemplifies the importance of keeping active as part of the effective management of RA; further notes the important role that physiotherapy has in supporting people with RA to maintain their levels of movement and physical activity, reducing pain, fostering independence and in many cases allowing people to remain in work; further welcomes the work of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS) and the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy in highlighting concerns with the way physiotherapy services are being organised and the difficulties these patients may have in accessing services throughout the UK; and praises the work of NRAS in campaigning for equal access to good care and services for all RA patients, their families and carers.
Please ask your MP to sign EDM 2221. It is not specifically for World Arthritis Day so you can ask any time soon. You can see whether your MP has already signed the EDM at the following link:
Also, to coincide with the launch, and as part of a new
drive to encourage members to get involved in direct lobbying, NRAS held
a successful live ministerial webchat with Health Minister Paul Burstow, Ailsa
and Phil Gray, Chief Executive of the Chartered Society for
Physiotherapy. The event attracted over 40 questions from members of the
public, including some politicians. During the discussions, the
Minister said GP referral rates needed to be ‘addressed’ and that the
Government would continue to support the benefits of ‘self referral’ for
patients and would be introducing a new ‘referral to treatment data
collection’ to highlight areas of excellence and under-performance to
challenge clinicians. The Minister revealed that he was also keen to
roll out personal health budgets – a new innovation that the Government
is currently piloting, which will give patients with continuing care requirements a sum of money each year
based on their needs. They will then develop a plan jointly with their
healthcare team to decide how best to use the budget to meet their
health needs, including using the budget to buy personal equipment, pay
carers, or try alternative therapies. Although we support the idea in
principle, Ailsa pressed him about the
potential unintended consequences, stating that giving patients budgets
could also undermine the core services provided through the
multidisciplinary team (consultant, rheumatology nurse, physio,
podiatrist, occupational therapist) that is supposed to be available to
RA patients. The webchat was a great success, achieving coverage in
leading political blogs Left Foot Forward and Lib Dem Voice, and
securing a guest piece on the Guardian website for Ailsa.
NRAS mark World Arthritis Day in 2010 at 10 Downing Street
World Arthritis Day was Tuesday, 12 October and NRAS together with its members, health professionals and MPs have been working together to raise awareness of RA and of what needs to be done to improve outcomes for patients.
The theme of World Arthritis Day 2010 was ‘let’s work together’ so it is very appropriate that different people have been lending support to NRAS in its campaign for improvements in services for people with rheumatoid arthritis.
Members of NRAS had written to the Prime Minister, David Cameron describing their experiences of living with rheumatoid arthritis and on World Arthritis Day these were delivered to him at 10 Downing Street.
National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society members and MPs ask the Prime Minister for national coordination on rheumatoid arthritis to mark World Arthritis Day
left to right: Sarah Wallace (NRAS Member), David Amess MP, Bob Russell MP, Lynn Love (Director of Operations NRAS), Graham Stringer MP, Ailsa Bosworth (Chief Executive NRAS), Professor David Scott (Professor of Rheumatology & Chief Medical Advisor to NRAS), Helen Copeland (NRAS Member)and Jean Burke(NRAS Member)
What can you do to help?
You can help by getting your MP involved; it is easier than you think ... and hopefully interesting and rewarding. You could write a letter to your local MP telling them about your personal experience of rheumatoid arthritis and asking them to support you and the work of NRAS by becoming a Parliamentary Friend of NRAS. You could request a meeting to see your MP in the House of Commons or visit them at their constituency surgery to encourage them to support our campaign for better services.
Don’t forget, ask your MP to sign EDM 795.
If you feel that you can help support the campaigning work of NRAS, or if you would like more information on how to help, then please contact Jamie Hewitt, Government Affairs Manager at NRAS at:
A big ‘Thank You’ to all NRAS members, health professionals and other organisations who have worked together with us to raise awareness of RA and of what needs to be done to improve outcomes for patients.