The day has been on the calendar since 1996 when it was initiated to raise awareness of arthritis in all its forms among the medical community, the general public, and patients themselves. Run by EULAR, the European League Against Rheumatism, it seeks to influence public policy, making decision makers aware of the significant burden that people with arthritis face, and to ensure that patients and carers receive as much support as possible.
The hashtags #ConnectToday and #WorldArthritisDay will be trending on 12 October, and are particularly designed to get those with arthritis to connect, share their experiences and develop a network of support.
There are a number of different types of arthritis, including osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, and gout. Our previous article here describes some of these in more detail and the options available to patients. All rheumatoid and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) are encompassed by World Arthritis Day.
The campaign “Don’t delay, connect today” was launched in 2017 and stresses the importance of gaining an early diagnosis and access to care. EULAR is also providing ‘facilitation awards’ to campaigns and projects that promote awareness and assist RMD sufferers to be part of the workforce.
Andrew Clayton, a senior associate in the clinical negligence team at Penningtons Manches, said: “We fully support the important work of all the organisations taking part in World Arthritis Day. There are many different types of arthritis and these affect all ages, but particularly with an ageing population, the trend will be for it to become a more common problem, with resulting effects on mobility, and patient safety.
“Our team deals with a large number of claimants whose mobility problems lead to falls and pressure sores. Greater recognition of the role that arthritis plays can only lead to improved outcomes for these patients.”