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May is ankylosing spondylitis month! A Q&A session with Michael Mallinson

May is ankylosing spondylitis month and to celebrate, we would like to share this question and answer session Arthritis Consumer Experts did with Michael Mallinson, President of the Canadian Spondylitis Association.

Picture of Michael - President of Canadian Ankylosing Spondylitis Association

Q: Hi, Michael. Can you tell us about your organization?
A: The Canadian Spondylitis Association is a nonprofit national patient association formed in April 2006 to support and to advocate for those suffering from ankylosing spondylitis and associated spondyloarthritis diseases including psoriatic arthritis, enteropathic arthritis and reactive arthritis. Our goal is to be the leader in Canada providing support, education and advocacy for the spondyloarthritis patient community

Q: What are some misconceptions about ankylosing spondylitis?
A: Most people are unaware that AS strikes young people. The typical age of onset is between 17 and 35. Although people are aware that arthritis is a women’s disease, they are surprised when they found out AS has a significantly higher prevalence among men.
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An important arthritis read before you vote

The BC provincial election is on May 9, 2017 – Vote for arthritis!

BC Election - Vote forArthritis Consumer Experts (ACE) asked British Columbia’s political parties, leaders and candidates to share their views on how to improve arthritis prevention, treatment and care.

Arthritis affects 1 in 5 British Columbia residents and is the leading cause of disability in the province. The economic burden of arthritis is expected to double within a generation and strain the BC health system’s ability to provide quality care to BC patients with arthritis.

ACE sent an open letter and survey to all candidates and political parties running in the upcoming May 9th British Columbia provincial election. ACE has received party responses from the BC Liberal Party, BC NDP, BC Green Party, BC Citizens First Party and the BC New Republican Party to questions regarding models of care, osteoarthritis education, aboriginal arthritis care, reimbursement for inflammatory arthritis medications and flexible work arrangements. To view a political party’s response, click on the links below.

To view all candidate and party responses, please visit ACE’s BC Election 2017 page and please vote on May 9th. We encourage you to:

  • Circulate this survey and candidate responses to friends, family, healthcare professionals, and your local media.
  • Reach out to your candidates; here are tips on how to communicate with your electoral candidates, please visit our “Taking Action” page and click on “What You Can Do“.

Le Réseau canadien en obésité publie le premier bilan du genre au Canada

Le Réseau canadien en obésité publie le premier bilan du genre au Canada : Bulletin 2017 sur l’accès des adultes au traitement de l’obésité au Canada

Une modification de paradigme dans la prévention et le traitement de l’obésité.

Report Card on Obesity Treatment Cover PhotoLe bulletin semble prêt à passer du concept qui attribuait l’obésité à de simples mauvais choix de mode de vie pour évoluer vers celui du modèle socio-écologique de santé comportant l’obligation, pour nos systèmes de santé comme pour la société, de prévenir et de traiter l’obésité au même titre que d’autres maladies chroniques.

Comprendre votre indice de masse corporelle (IMC)
Le document Lignes directrices pour la classification du poids chez les adultes, publié par Santé Canada, s’appuie sur l’indice de masse corporelle (IMC) pour déterminer si une personne souffre d’un excès de poids. Vous pouvez calculer votre IMC en ligne ici ou en utilisant la formule suivante :

IMC = poids (kg) / taille (m)2

Le tableau Classification du risque pour la santé en fonction de l’indice de masse corporelle (IMC) publié par Santé Canada montre la corrélation entre l’IMC et le risque de développer certains problèmes de santé tels que le diabète de type 2, l’hypertension, une maladie coronarienne, un accident vasculaire cérébral et le cancer. D’autres facteurs peuvent influer sur votre IMC. Il est recommandé de consulter votre médecin de famille si votre excès de poids devient une préoccupation pour vous.
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Canadian Obesity Network publishes first-ever Report Card On Access to Obesity Treatment

Canadian Obesity Network publishes first-ever Report Card On Access to Obesity Treatment For Adults in Canada 2017

A paradigm shift in the prevention and treatment of obesity.

Report Card on Obesity Treatment Cover PhotoThe report is a shift away from considering obesity to be merely the result of poor lifestyle choices toward a socio-ecological model of health that carries with it an obligation to our health systems and society to prevent and treat it as we do other chronic diseases.

Understanding your Body Mass Index (BMI)
Health Canada’s Canadian Guidelines for Body Weight Classification in Adults uses the Body Mass Index (BMI) to determine if someone is overweight. You can calculate your BMI using the formula below or online here:

BMI = weight (kg)/height (m)2

Health Canada’s Health Risk Classification According to Body Mass Index (BMI) table shows the correlation between your BMI score and your risk of developing health problems, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, arthritis and cancer. Please note other factors may influence your BMI. You should consult your family physician if you are concerned about being overweight.
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The cost of non-adherence to prescribed medications

Pills and needles to portray medication nonadherenceAn article published in the Annals of Internal Medicine estimated that non-adherence resulted in approximately 125,000 deaths and at least 10 percent of hospitalizations, costing US health care system $100 and $289 billion a year.

The article reports that “studies have consistently shown that 20 percent to 30 percent of medication prescriptions are never filled, and that approximately 50 percent of medications for chronic diseases are not taken as prescribed. The review found that for people who do take prescription medications, they only take about half the prescribed doses.

Researchers from Northwestern University found that one-third of kidney transplant patients don’t take their anti-rejection medications. Other studies show that 41 percent of heart attack patients don’t take their blood pressure medications and only 50 percent of children with asthma use their inhalers as prescribed.

In an article in the New York Times, Dr. Bruce Bender, co-director of the Centre for Health Promotion at National Jewish Health in Denver, explained: “When people don’t take the medications prescribed for them, emergency department visits and hospitalizations increase and more people die. Non-adherence is a huge problem, and there’s no one solution because there are many different reasons why it happens.”

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Cassie and Friends needs your voice for the upcoming BC 2017 Election

Calling on the BC Government to save and change the lives of children living with systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis.

Cassie and Friends BC Election ImageJuvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA) affects 24,000 infants to teens in BC and Canada, or 3 in every 1,000, making it one of the most common causes of chronic disability in children. Ten to 20 percent of children living with JIA have systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis (sJIA), a severe and potentially life-threatening form of the disease. Both JIA and sJIA can be devastating and come with high financial, family and societal burdens.

In partnership with Arthritis Consumer Experts, Cassie and Friends Society is leading a call for the BC Government to drastically improve the outlook of children with sJIA by allowing reimbursement coverage for canakinumab for children who need it. For children who do not respond to other treatments, canakinumab can prevent progression of the disease and disease symptoms.

Cassie and Friends is urging all parties running for public office in British Columbia to make juvenile arthritis and canakinumab reimbursement access a health priority during the upcoming provincial election on May 9. You can help by sharing your story or sending an email or letter to your candidate. Together, we can help improve the lives of children living with arthritis!

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