News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


530,000 NZers join world to raise awareness, fight for cure

Media Release

12 October 2013


530,000 New Zealanders join others around the world to raise awareness and fight for a cure

“World Arthritis Day, which is celebrated every year on 12 October, provides an opportunity for those with arthritis to have their voices heard, and the opportunity to highlight some of the issues they face.

Arthritis New Zealand Chief Executive Sandra Kirby asks New Zealanders to show their support for them and the 1,000 children who are living with arthritis on World Arthritis Day, which is this Saturday.

“One of the biggest issues facing people living with arthritis is awareness of the impact of this chronic health condition. Arthritis is not treated as a health priority. And people may be told ‘it’s just arthritis’, even though arthritis is the leading cause of disability in our country, and there are 17,940 people receiving sickness or invalids benefits as a result of musculo-skeletal conditions, the bulk of which will be arthritis.”

Lewis Bird (47) was first diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS when he was eleven. AS is a form of arthritis that mainly affects the spine. Symptoms usually develop between the ages of 15 and 35. Lewis had both hips replaced when he was 30, and currently takes a cocktail of heavy duty drugs. AS resulted in him leaving work and he’s one of more than 17,,000 New Zealanders living on a benefit. It has slowed him down but not stopped him! Lewis doesn’t sweat the small stuff and tries to stay mentally tough.

Research shows that the economic cost of arthritis to NZ is $3.2billion dollars a year.

“So this Saturday, please remember those people who are living with arthritis. And remember that one day you could be one of them,” Ms Kirby concluded.


About Arthritis New Zealand

Arthritis New Zealand is a national organisation whose mission is to improve the health and wellbeing of people who are affected by arthritis. There are about 530,000 New Zealanders living with arthritis, which means it is almost certain that someone close to you is affected.

The most common forms of arthritis in New Zealand are osteoarthritis, gout and rheumatoid arthritis. And although arthritis is often thought of as being an older person’s condition, it can affect anyone, at any age, and at any time, and there are 1,000 children living with arthritis in New Zealand.

Unfortunately, arthritis is still trivialised. People are still told ‘it’s only arthritis’ by others who are unaware how painful and debilitating this condition can be. And it is still not common knowledge that arthritis is the leading cause of disability in our country, or that there are 17,940 people receiving sickness or invalids benefits as a result of musculo-skeletal conditions, the bulk of which will be arthritis.

Arthritis New Zealand is the leader in the provision of awareness, education, services and advocacy for arthritis in New Zealand. But only 12% of its funding comes from government agencies. Without the generosity of our donors and volunteers, we wouldn’t be able to help those who live with the pain of arthritis every day.

Arthritis, it could surprise you.


ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Kiwi Pride: Accolades For Film About Man Who Falls In Love With A Stick

A short animated film written and directed by New Zealand born Matthew Darragh has been selected for the Courts des îles, International Festival of Short Fiction Films. More>>

ALSO:

Anniversaries: Vivid Memories Four Years After Christchurch Quake

Four years ago, an earthquake that would change the lives of thousands shook Christchurch at 12.51 p.m. More>>

ALSO:

Environment 'n' Conservation: Slash Meets Tāne The Tuatara

Rock and Roll superstar and former Guns 'n' Roses guitarist Slash visited Zealandia Ecosanctuary along with collaborating band Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators. More>>

Foo Fighters: Exclusive Show In Support Of Music Foundation

Frontier Touring has today announced that the Foo Fighters will play a last minute intimate and exclusive benefit show at the Auckland Town Hall this Friday February 20 with all profits going to The New Zealand Music Foundation. More>>

ALSO:

Canterbury Quakes: Feedback Sought On Short-Listed Memorial Designs

Six short-listed designs for the Canterbury Earthquake Memorial have been released for public input... The Memorial will honour the victims of Canterbury’s earthquakes and acknowledge the suffering of all those who lived through them as well as the heroism of those who participated in the rescue and recovery operations. More>>

ALSO:

Celia Lashlie: Legacy Will Live On

Social justice advocate Celia Lashlie leaves a legacy that will continue to have a positive impact on the lives of New Zealanders for years to come, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “Celia was a powerful voice for reason, sense and compassion. Her work, particularly with teenage boys, was ground-breaking." More>>

ALSO:

Obituary: Sad Farewell To PPTA Activist Robin Duff

Duff has been a long-time fixture of the association... Most recently Duff has been working hard to support Canterbury teachers through the quakes that devastated the region. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news