Putting arthritis on the agenda in Wales

Cliciwch yma am y dudalen hon yn Cymraeg.

Our campaigning has led to real, tangible change for people with arthritis in Wales.

A new paediatric rheumatology service for children with arthritis has been set up at the Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospital for Wales. We have also campaigned successfully for a national strategy to improve arthritis and musculoskeletal health care. A little further back, we led the campaign for free prescriptions to be extended to everyone with chronic health conditions in Wales (which led to prescription charges been scrapped in Wales).

Despite these changes, there is still much to do to push back against the pain arthritis and our campaigning is as active as ever.

Here you’ll information for anyone interested in campaigning as well as information for decision makers such as Health Boards, Members of the Senedd and councillors to help you help us make change happen for people with arthritis in your communities.

Campaigners – get involved!

We have an active community of campaigners in Wales who are passionate about making a difference for everyone living with a musculoskeletal condition in the country. There are lots of ways to get involved:

MSs, MPs, Councillors and other decision makers

With 887,000 people living with arthritis and musculoskeletal conditions in Wales, we know that many of you will have experienced, personally or with family or friends, the huge impact arthritis can have on quality of life.

We need your help to make sure the needs of people living with arthritis are heard loud and clear in the Senedd, at Westminster, in our local councils and in our Health Boards.

Our Policy and Public Affairs Team in Wales is here to provide information and latest research on policy issues. Please do not hesitate to contact us, by emailing campaignswales@versusarthritis.org, to discuss policy matters, our campaigns or other matters impacting on people with arthritis in your area.

You can read our Senedd Election Manifesto 2021 (PDF, 679 KB).

We are pleased to offer our MS Welcome Pack 2021 (PDF, 2.4 MB) for Members of the Senedd to help you make a difference for people living with arthritis in your constituency / region. To become a Senedd Arthritis Champion, an MSs should post a selfie on social media holding this printable poster (PDF, 121 KB) – more detail and suggested wording for a social media post in the Welcome Pack.

Our current campaigns and policy priorities relate to:

  • Ensuring the backlog and extended (post-pandemic) waiting times in orthopaedic services, such as joint replacements, are addressed as a high priority.
  • Ensuring people waiting long for orthopaedic services receive a package of support as they wait in severe and worsening pain for life-changing surgery.
  • Ensuring the National MSK Framework currently out to public consultation is completed and fully implemented across Wales.

Please contact us, by emailing campaignswales@versusarthritis.org for our latest briefings and to discuss any of the above campaign priorities.

Our support services are here for your constituents. Please signpost relevant constituents to our helpline - 0800 5200 520. Our helpline team will provide individually tailored information including details of our local services.

Cymru Versus Arthritis Manifesto 2021

Arthritis and MSK conditions are among the biggest cases of pain, disability and working days lost. Our manifesto offers four key policy calls that are needed over the next four years to push back against the pain and impact of arthritis.

Our manifesto calls for:

  • A new National Orthopaedic Recovery and Transformation Plan.
  • The appointment of an NHS Clinical Lead for Musculoskeletal Conditions in Wales.
  • Support for people with arthritis to work and safeguarding musculoskeletal health in the workplace.
  • Recognition of arthritis as a health priority.

Take a look at our full Cymru Versus Arthritis manifesto (PDF, 679 KB).