Roughly one in five Canadians live with arthritis. Where is our social movement?
Cheryl Koehn, Founder and President of Arthritis Consumer Experts (ACE) wants to start a movement for arthritis. In this issue of JointHealth™ insight, she comments about the myth of arthritis:
At a recent dinner party, a good friend of mine said something revealing to me: “I don’t think of you as disabled.” My friend’s comment was meant as a compliment but also reflected the still common misperception of arthritis pain as a “condition” associated with getting old and that can’t really be treated. It also reminded me how people with arthritis are often embarrassed about it and live in silence. This in spite of the fact that arthritis affects more than 4.6 million Canadians, is a debilitating disease and the leading cause of work disability in Canada and limits the activities of nearly 20% of Canadians.
To celebrate Arthritis Awareness Month in Canada, this issue of JointHealth™ insight will also highlight two of ACE’s programs:
Canada’s Best Workplaces for Employees Living with Arthritis Award
This year’s program will recognize workplaces who provide an environment that meets the needs of employees living with arthritis to manage their disease and work with symptoms such as pain, fatigue, joint dysfunction or immobility
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An arthritis ‘pacemaker’ is on the horizon. The device is a tiny electronic implant fitted under the skin near the collarbone. It works by sending electrical pulses to the vagus nerve. When the vagus nerve is stimulated by the electric pulse, it sends a signal from the brain to key organs such as the spleen and triggers a decrease in the production of cytokines. Cytokines are proteins that help regulate the immune system and can cause inflammation in joints.
The arthritis ‘pacemaker’ is currently being tested in the Netherlands with people who live with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Scientists found that the use of electrical pulse can have a similar positive effect on RA without the side effects of medications. The medical device should be available in the United Kingdom by 2020. A patient who took part in the pilot study said: “I have my life back, like before I got arthritis.”
In an interview with the Daily Mail, Clare Jacklin of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society cautions: “The disease is different in different people. This new device may well be impactful for some patients dependent on their disease profile.”
ACE is searching for Canada’s Best Workplaces for Employees Living with Arthritis
To help kick off Arthritis Awareness Month in Canada, Arthritis Consumer Experts ACE) today announced the launch of the third annual Canada’s Best Workplaces for Employees Living with Arthritis. The judging criteria this year will particularly value those organizations providing an environment that meets the needs of employees living with arthritis to manage their disease and work with symptoms such as pain, fatigue, joint dysfunction or immobility.
“Smart employers know committed, productive teams require an environment where employees know they can balance work, family and personal responsibilities. In this third year of our award, we are looking closely at the availability of flexible work benefits and policies, as well as employees’ comments on their effectiveness,” said Cheryl Koehn, President and Founder, Arthritis Consumer Experts. “We want to recognize companies providing innovative flexible work arrangements to help employees with arthritis, and other chronic diseases, take better care of themselves, and in turn report less pain, fatigue, and disruption at work, allowing them to remain employed for longer.” Continue reading →
What has ACE done for you lately? Here’s a few highlights during Arthritis Awareness Month in Canada.
The delivery of healthcare may be a provincial responsibility, but the federal government also plays a significant role in funding healthcare and shaping healthcare policies.
To help our members and subscribers compare healthcare platforms, we asked the Conservative Party of Canada, the New Democratic Party of Canada, the Liberal Party of Canada and the Green Party of Canada the same four questionsabout top healthcare issues for Canadians living with arthritis. ACE is posting responses on our website. Continue reading →
September is Arthritis Awareness Month in Canada. In this issue of JointHealth™ monthly, Arthritis Consumer Experts (ACE) looks at Models of Care for Inflammatory Arthritis to improve the way healthcare is delivered to patients by the health policy decision makers, rheumatologists, allied health professionals and other health care providers who care for them.
Below are highlights from this month’s newsletter:
What is an inflammatory arthritis model of care
The foundation of modernizing IA care in Canada
The role of IA patients in the development of a pan-Canadian approach to inflammatory arthritis models of care
Labour Day celebrates the achievements of workers. It originated with the labour union movement which called for eight hours for work, eight hours for recreation, and eight hours for rest. It is important that we acknowledge workplace safety, especially for your joints, in order to foster workplace achievements, retain qualified workers, and optimize work productivity.
Certain jobs put your joints at higher risk of getting arthritis, such as those that require you to make the same repetitive motions daily. In an interview with Everyday Health, Erik Gail, MD, professor of clinical medicine in the rheumatology section and interim director of the Arizona Arthritis Center at the University of Arizona College of Medicine in Tucson, said: “Anything that puts unhealthy strains or stresses on the joints can cause arthritis.” Below is a list of jobs that may increase your risk for arthritis if you don’t take the necessary arthritis prevention strategies. Continue reading →