Press Kit 2019
Key Facts for Journalists
What is the NRAS?
The National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS) is ‘the voice’ of people affected by Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) across the whole of the UK. Founded in 2001, NRAS also supports the families of those affected as well as the health professionals who treat them.
The NRAS, is the only patient-led organisation in the UK specialising in RA and JIA. Due to its targeted focus on RA and JIA, NRAS provides truly expert and wide-ranging services to support, educate, provide resources to and campaign for people living with these complex autoimmune conditions.
Quick facts about RA and JIA
More than 400,000 people in the UK (around 1%) have rheumatoid arthritis costing the NHS approximately £560 million per year. The National Audit Office estimate that the total cost of RA to the UK economy is £4.8 billion per year. There are approximately 12,000 children in the UK with JIA, which represents 1 in every 1,000 children under the age of 16. There are approximately 1,200 new cases of JIA diagnosed each year in the UK.
What is Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)?
RA is an autoimmune disease, where the immune system attacks the lining of the joints, causing inflammation stiffness, pain and extreme fatigue. If left untreated, the joint can lose its shape and alignment and lead to permanent disability. It tends to affect joints in the hands and feet first, however it is a systemic disease and can affect the entire body, including organs such as the lungs, heart and eyes.
What is Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA)?
Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) is an umbrella term for seven or more clinical patterns of inflammatory arthritis of unknown cause in children under 16 years of age. JIA causes inflammation in the joints, although it can also affect the eyes and other organs.
Topic Experts and Spokespeople Available to Media
Ailsa Bosworth MBE, National Patient Champion
Ailsa Bosworth was about 30 years old when she was diagnosed with seronegative rheumatoid arthritis. Her journey with the disease led her to found a national charity, the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS). The society operates from its offices in Maidenhead, where they now have 24 staff. The NRAS is providing valuable services for people with rheumatoid arthritis and juvenile idiopathic arthritis—a one-stop shop for people living with the disease. Ailsa was awarded an MBE for services to people with RA in 2016. Read more about Ailsa's story here.
The charity is given great support by a board of medical advisors led by Chief Medical Advisor Professor Peter Taylor, Norman Collisson Professor of Musculoskeletal Sciences & Fellow of St Peter’s College Oxford, Head of Clinical Sciences, Botnar Research Centre University of Oxford alongside NRAS Scottish Patron, Professor Iain McInnes, Director of Experimental Medicine, University of Glasgow and EULAR President Elect.
If you are a member of the media and would like to get in touch with one of our experts, or if you have any media related inquires please contact the NRAS office on:
01628 823 524
In your email, please state what you are looking for, your media title and the deadline you are working towards.
- What is Rheumatoid Arthritis
- Early Symptoms of RA
- Anatomy Health with NRAS CEO Ailsa Bosworth
- NRAS Youtube Channel