More than 1,000 people participated in info series by Middle East Arthritis Foundation hosted to mark World Arthritis Day

Participants got practical tips and free medical advice to help them manage careers and lifestyles despite the chronic disease

18th October 2020, Dubai, UAE – To mark the World Arthritis Day that annually falls on October 12th, Middle East Arthritis Foundation hosted a series of webinars dedicated to raising awareness about the debilitating disease set to become the fourth most common cause of physical disability across the globe.

The comprehensive, seven-day program brought together a host of leading experts from across the region to discuss the best-practice strategies and initiatives for improving quality person-centred care amidst the pandemic and across multiple settings, while also shedding light on the latest research, therapies and treatments, innovation, and technologies from around the world.

Dr. Humeira Badsha, Founding Member of the Middle East Arthritis Foundation stated, “With 350 million people globally affected by some or the other form of arthritis and with 92.1 million adults having been diagnosed with arthritis or reporting some arthritis symptoms in 2019 alone, it is imperative we educate the masses with the symptoms to look out for early diagnosis and with practical tips and advice from the right doctors to help them live a fulfilling life and even reduce the burden on the healthcare industry.”

The event was a huge success in tackling the common myths and misconceptions associated with arthritis and it gave individuals a chance to reach out to various specialists including rheumatologists, movement experts, nutrition specialists, psychologists amongst others to address their general and specific concerns in the wake of Covid-19. Participants engaged with experts in real time, so they could deepen their knowledge on the topic and get valuable tips to effectively care for themselves or loved ones diagnosed with arthritis.

“With the introduction of the lockdown and restrictions required to combat covid-19, we were continuously addressing concerns of our patients on how they can exercise at home safely, the diet they need to follow, additional precautions they should adhere to, it was absolutely necessary for us to increase public awareness and the e-series helped us reach out to a wider audience within the UAE and across the region,” added Dr. Badsha.

Recent studies have shown a delay in diagnosis of 12 months in the UAE alone due to the lack of awareness accompanied by misconceptions that arthritis can affect only adults, which is far from the truth. The Foundation is grateful to partners Lilly, Novartis, Jannsen, Pfizer, UpJohn, Sandoz, Abbvie, Newbridge and Amgen for their support in helping create public awareness for the greater good of the community.

The Middle East Arthritis Foundation (MEAF) supports people of all ages living with arthritis and hosts various events across the year to support arthritis warriors and raise awareness for the effective management and treatment of this chronic condition.

About Middle East Arthritis Foundation:

The Middle East Arthritis Foundation ((formerly Emirates Arthritis Foundation) is a non-profit organisation that strives to breathe life into leading ideas on health, hope and happiness. Its goal is to improve the quality of life for people with arthritis through leadership training, in the prevention, control and cure of the disease. Founded in 2006, the Foundation has grown to support more than 2000 patients today across the UAE. MEAF conduct an extensive range of events and programmes to support arthritis patients.