Apni Jung

Apni Jung (translated means ‘Our Fight’ in Hindi) is an NRAS initiative that aims to support people with RA from the UK South Asian communities by providing accessible educational resources, mostly in video or podcast format, and in different languages such as Hindi, Punjabi, Urdu, to enable better understanding about RA and how to live with and self-manage their disease well between consultations with their rheumatology team.

Please note that whilst the videos in this Apni Jung area are in Hindi or Punjabi, you can convert most of the content on our website to Hindi, Punjabi or Urdu by going to the bottom right corner of the website and selecting the relevant flag.

What is Apni Jung?

Apni Jung translates to ‘Our Fight’ in Hindi, against rheumatoid arthritis (RA).

Since 2016 when we first launched our Apni Jung service at the British Society for Rheumatology congress in April of that year, together with our Health Professional Medical Advisor in this field, Dr Kanta Kumar, (Lecturer at Birmingham University and Researcher at The Kellgren Centre for Rheumatology, Manchester Royal Infirmary), NRAS has been gradually increasing our services and support for the UK South Asian population. One of our long-term strategic aims is to make our services more visible, relevant and accessible to those who need us most, particularly those communities who, for reasons of language, culture and/or health literacy skills may be less able to negotiate about their healthcare needs or successfully navigate the health system in line with their individual needs.

A real challenge for health professionals treating patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) from minority backgrounds is finding a way to help those who don’t speak English as a first language and who may even have low literacy skills in terms of written materials in their own language, to get access to high quality educational materials on their condition. This Apni Jung web area has culturally relevant information about RA, its impact and its treatment in a combination of Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu. We hope to offer further South Asian languages over time and as funding permits.

This web area also includes video clips of Asian patients talking about their experiences which we hope will help others to feel supported and less isolated. NRAS knows from the extensive experience of running peer to peer support programmes just how beneficial this kind of peer support can be. We hope that all rheumatology health professionals treating people with RA from the South Asian communities in the UK will sign-post their patients to this website. We have a wonderful and supportive Global Majorities Advisory Board who help and guide our work in this area. For further information, please contact us at apnijung@nras.org.uk. Also we are always looking for enthusiastic volunteers from South Asian communities across the UK with RA, especially those who may speak one or more South Asian languages. If you would like to find out more about volunteering opportunities with NRAS, please contact enquiries@nras.org.uk

Hear from others

Patient stories and experiences are important to share – it helps to know that others are experiencing similar challenges.

Hear from other South Asian people in Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu about their lives with RA.

See stories

For Health Professionals who have South Asian patients

You can order quantities of patient leaflets and posters which can be given to patients and displayed in clinic settings from NRAS by emailing reception@nras.org.uk

A training programme for Enhancing Clinician Cultural Competence to Improve Patient Outcomes in Rheumatology and Beyond Among Minority Ethnic Populations

A culturally sensitive training programme (launched in early 2024) for clinicians has demonstrated potential in enhancing cultural competency, patient enablement, and fostering improved shared decision-making with minority ethnic patients living with auto-immune rheumatic diseases. To find out more and access the free training click below.

A programme of work designed by University of Birmingham researchers has been promoted, by the British Society for Rheumatology (and NRAS). Results of the study were recently published and can be seen here: https://academic.oup.com/rheumatology/advance-article/doi/10.1093/rheumatology/kead383/7233067?utm_source=authortollfreelink&utm_campaign=rheumatology&utm_medium=email&guestAccessKey=9af6c87b-4208-4ec2-b47f-c88d2aca7c32

Rheumatology researchers identified communication gaps between healthcare providers and patients from different cultural backgrounds, hindering quality care. Research led by Dr. Kanta Kumar, University of Birmingham and teams, developed a 90-minute training programme by using a before and after design research. The team tested the training programme by offering the training to fifteen clinicians across the rheumatology centres in England and collected data from on 364 patients.

The results showed overall improvement in implementing cultural concepts during the consultation, and patient enablement with a significant boost in ratings from South Asian patients.

Encouraged by these findings, the cultural competency programme will be offered to new and early-career rheumatology staff. Dr. Kumar and team have emphasised the urgency of reducing healthcare disparities, highlighting the programme’s potential to be adopted by professionals in various policy makers and specialties.

If you are serving a diverse ethnic population then get involved in bridging health disparities,

The intervention programme is now freely available to members of the British Society for Rheumatology. And you can undertake the training here: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLfUcs_A2Tr1gqmRnqc-xeH4XcT_OOjEQD

Early Inflammatory Arthritis Journey

These videos are about the early inflammatory arthritis journey from diagnosis to getting started on treatment and learning about the different team members and their roles within the Rheumatology Multi-disciplinary Team and how they can help you.

Example patient consultation by GP

GP Consultation between Dr. Faika Usman (GP) and Mrs. Fozia Hussain (patient with Rheumatoid Arthritis).

The Rheumatology Multi-Disciplinary Team

RA Diagnosis, Early Journey and Information from and about members of the Rheumatology Multi-Disciplinary Team Involved.

Moving on to Biologics

If your RA is not being well managed on standard disease modifying drugs (such as Methotrexate for example, which is usually the gold standard treatment when you are diagnosed with RA), then you and your rheumatology team may decide to move you onto one of the biologic drugs or an advanced therapy such as one of the JAK Inhibitors.  This video describes Joti’s journey when she started on an Anti-TNF treatment.

This video explains what rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is in Hindi and how it is possible to move from standard treatment to Biologics. English and Hindi subtitles supported.

Cardiovascular Disease and RA

People with RA, including South Asians, have a higher risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) while living with Rheumatoid Arthritis and RA increases the risk of premature atherosclerosis. In previous research, we have highlighted that patients of South Asian origin with RA had limited knowledge about CVD risk.

There is a need to educate the population about CVD risk but limited culturally sensitive interventions exist in rheumatology.  

By working with patient partners, the team culturally adapted a cognitive behavioural patient education intervention which was trialled with White British patients, you can read the academic paper here.

The intervention was adapted to meet the specific cultural needs of the South Asian population. The twenty-five minute online educational video below illustrates the key messages with pictorial diagrams.

Hear more about this topic from rheumatology professionals and patient partners Joti and Ayesha in the informative video below.

Meri Sehat, Mere Rules (My Health, My Rules)

CVD risk awareness educational video in Hindi for people of South Asian origin living with rheumatoid arthritis /SLE

Here is a PDF transcription in English for non-Hindi speaking health professionals and family members.

Research in this area

Our chief collaborator in this area of NRAS work is Dr. Kanta Kumar, Programme Director: MSc Advanced Practice in healthcare (international) & Module Lead: Advanced Physical Health Assessment, Institute of Clinical Sciences, College of Medical and Dental Sciences at the University of Birmingham.

Dr Kumar held a post at the University of Manchester as a Lecturer until 2017. Dr Kanta Kumar completed her NIHR awarded Clinical Doctoral PhD at the University of Birmingham in 2015. The PhD work focused on the issues related to medication adherence and the influence of ethnicity in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. Her areas of research include: behavioural medicine and impact of ethnicity of musculoskeletal disease.

Dr Kumar has published extensively in these areas and has developed a national reputation for her work in ethnicity in rheumatology. The impact of her research on patient care is bringing together all major stakeholders including British Society for Rheumatology (BSR), patient organisations, industry, and the NHS. With her continued commitment to improving care of patients with rheumatoid arthritis she has co-developed the Apni Jung work with National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS) to help engage South Asian patients in education about their disease and acquiring self-management skills with the right support. Dr Kumar’s’ future research will contribute towards addressing the health inequalities in rheumatology practice.

A Relevant Peer-Reviewed article may be of interest:

Patient Empowerment: Apni Jung (Our Fight) against Rheumatoid Arthritis for South Asian Population –
Ailsa Bosworth, Shirish Dubey, Ade Adebajo, Arumugam Moorthy, Shivam Arora, Afshan Salim, Joti Reehal, Vibhu Paudyal, Monica Gupta, and Kanta Kumar.

you can convert most of the content on our website to Hindi, Punjabi or Urdu by going to the bottom right corner of the website and selecting the relevant flag.


Our e-learning programme which is modular and all video based may be helpful to South Asian people with RA.

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Being diagnosed with and living with RA can be make you feel alone and confused. The NRAS Helpline is here for you, Mon-Fri from 9:30am to 4:30pm. Call us on 0800 298 7650.

You can also contact us by email by filling out our contact form.

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