What is campaigning

What is campaigning?

Campaigning is about getting change and making your community, your region or your country better. It's about making sure everyone has a voice.

Most of all, campaigning is a way to tackle issues that matter to you.

Campaigning can take all shapes and sizes. If you’ve ever bought Fairtrade coffee, taken part in something like the ice bucket challenge or signed a petition, you're a campaigner.

Anything that raises awareness, or that strives to change something, is campaigning.

What are we campaigning for?

There are three key areas that need urgent action if we want to push back the limits of arthritis for the 10 million people living in pain in the UK today.

We need local politicians to champion these areas by listening to people with arthritis and taking action in Parliament and at our councils.

Preventing arthritis

Prevention is about making sure that the next generation don’t have to live with the pain or lack of mobility caused by arthritis.

We want our government and councils to make keeping people active, mobile and healthy a priority.

What questions can you ask about what's being done to prevent people getting arthritis?

Does your local council consider the pain caused by arthritis?

Has your council included arthritis in its health and wellbeing assessments? One in four councils hasn't, but we believe that every council should produce a plan aimed at keeping local people active, mobile and healthy.

Does your council provide opportunities for physical activity for people with arthritis?

Are there exercise classes that take into account your arthritis? Are there opportunities to swim? Are there local programmes that help local people to lose weight and stay healthy? Do the council tell people about them?

Do your local NHS services think about prevention?

When someone falls and fractures a bone, is there a service that provides targeted assessment and treatment for these patients? A fracture liaison service that's linked to every hospital is the best way to prevent future fractures, but nearly two thirds of hospitals don’t have one.

Got a question about prevention in your area? Email us at campaigns@versusarthritis.org.

Transforming services and support for people with arthritis

Transformation is about changing the services and support avilable for people with arthritis today.

People with arthritis have told us about the difficulties they have navigating around their treatment and care, and how challenging it is to make decisions about their health when living with pain.

We want to see access to services and treatments transformed to deliver high-quality, personalised care for people with arthritis.

The support people with arthritis receive to help them find and remain in work in also under the spotlight. Currently, there is an 'arthritis work gap', with the employment rate amongst people with arthritis 20% lower than the rate for people with no disability or long-term condition.

We want to see a transformation in the support people receive so that this gap can be closed. We also want to see a welfare system that works for people with arthritis, so that there is both employment and financial support for people when they are not able to work due to their condition.

What questions can you ask about what's being done to transform services and support for people with arthritis?

What services are already available for people with arthritis in your local area?

Are local people with arthritis listened to so they get:

  • personalised care
  • the right treatment at the right time.

Are your politicians making sure people with arthritis can get the treatments they need?

Are the NHS providing the treatments people with arthritis need?

The NHS has to provide drug-based treatment within three months of National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) approval.

But many arthritis treatments, such as exercise, aren't drug-based. The NHS doesn't have to provide non-drug treatments once NICE has approved them.

This means the system is already stacked against people with arthritis from the start. This is unfair and needs to change.

Are your politicians fighting for measures that will improve early diagnosis to prevent avoidable pain later on?

Rheumatoid arthritis needs early diagnosis and treatment within the first 12 weeks of symptoms appearing. Early, intensive treatment can greatly reduce long-term pain and disability.

Are people with arthritis getting access to the benefits and support to work that they need?

We’ve been campaigning for a fairer welfare system for people with arthritis, and to put a stop to any cuts to disability benefits. We want to hear your experiences of the benefits system and how it works for you.

Got a question about transformation in your area? Email us at campaigns@versusarthritis.org.

Curing arthritis

Cure is all about harnessing the power of exceptional sceince to make everyday life better for all people with all kinds of arthritis, and championing the UK’s leading role in research.

Is your MP supporting our work to find better diagnosis and treatment and a cure for arthritis?

We’re asking politicians to support a range of measures that support the funding of medical research into:

  • what causes different forms of arthritis
  • how we can diagnose and treat arthritis more effectively
  • how we can cure it.

Thousands of people with arthritis in your area will have benefitted from some of the research that we fund. We’re campaigning to make sure this continues.

Got a question on research and how your local politicians can support campaigning? Email us at campaigns@versusarthritis.org.