- Posted by: Joyce Watson MS
- Category: Feature
Assembly Member Joyce Watson this week met patients from south Pembrokeshire to learn about living with rheumatoid arthritis.
At an event to mark national Rheumatoid Arthritis Week 2014 (16 – 22 June) held at the National Assembly for Wales on Tuesday (17 June) the Mid and West AM met Vanessa Phillips from Kilgetty and Jean Bailey-Dering from Saundersfoot, ambassadors for the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society (NRAS).
Mrs Watson said:
“I was pleased to have the opportunity to speak with Vanessa and Jean, to learn more about what it is like to live with this disease. We discussed the challenges faced by local rheumatology services and issues relating to the treatment and care of people with RA.
“I am delighted to lend my support to national Rheumatoid Arthritis Week, to help raise the profile of this chronic autoimmune disease.”
To coincide with the launch of the campaign, NRAS released new research about chronic fatigue, a condition associated with rheumatoid arthritis.
The report surveyed 1, 954 people with RA across the UK. It found that chronic fatigue is a widespread symptom with 89% of people with RA reporting that they experienced chronic fatigue, and 94% saying that their episodes of chronic fatigue lasted several hours or all day.
The report also highlighted the significant impact chronic fatigue has on work. 71% of unemployed people of working age with the disease said their fatigue had contributed to their inability to work and an overwhelming 83% said they felt the public was not at all aware of the impact that chronic fatigue on people with RA.
NRAS is the only UK charity devoted specifically to RA, and is the voice of people with who live with the disease, their families and carers. For more information about Rheumatoid Arthritis Awareness Week 2014 visit: http://www.nras.org.uk/ra-awareness-week