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EULAR Recommendations on self-management in Inflammatory Arthritis

We presented the EULAR Recommendations on self-management in Inflammatory Arthritis at EULAR virtual congress on Saturday 5th June, 2021!

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For the last 2.5 years, our National Patient Champion, Ailsa Bosworth, has been the Convenor together with Consultant Rheumatologist (King’s), Elena Nikiphorou, of a EULAR Taskforce to develop recommendations on the implementation of strategies for health professionals in inflammatory arthritis. A multidisciplinary taskforce of 18 members from 11 European countries was convened. A systematic review and other supportive information (survey of healthcare professionals (HCPs) and patient organisations) were used to formulate the recommendations. 

Three overarching principles and nine recommendations were formulated. These focused on empowering patients to become active partners of the team and to take a more proactive role. The importance of patient education and key self-management interventions such as problem solving, goal setting and cognitive behavioural therapy were highlighted. Role of patient organisations and HCPs in promoting and signposting patients to available resources has been highlighted through the promotion of physical activity, lifestyle advice, support with mental health aspects and ability to remain at work. Digital healthcare is essential in supporting and optimising self-management and the HCPs need to be aware of available resources to signpost patients to. 

These recommendations support the inclusion of self-management advice and resources in the routine management of people with IA and aim to empower and support patients and encourage a more holistic, patient-centred approach to care which could result in improved patient experience of care and outcomes. 

These recommendations are already being translated by EULAR into 6 languages and NRAS will be working with EULAR over the summer on a strategy to implement them across Europe. We hope that this work will instigate closer working between patient organisations and rheumatology health professionals and health professional organisations across Europe. 

NRAS is proud to have been the initiator of this work and these recommendations will strengthen our continued work to provide high quality, evidence-based, supported self-management resources to support people with RA and JIA across the UK.

To see the full paper and recommendations, click here