New charity launches to demand and deliver better for people with arthritis

Abigail stood outside in her garden looking at camera.

A new charity, Versus Arthritis, has been unveiled today following the merger of two of the UK’s largest arthritis charities, Arthritis Research UK and Arthritis Care. The organisation, its name and visual identity have been created to demand and deliver better for over 10 million people living with arthritis and related conditions in the UK.

Arthritis is one of the major health issues facing people across the UK today. It affects one in six people, with over half of those living in pain every day. The impact on people with arthritis is profound as the condition slowly intrudes on everyday life – affecting the ability to work, care for a family, to move free from pain and to live independently. Yet arthritis is often dismissed as an inevitable part of aging or shrugged off as ‘just a bit of arthritis’.

The merger of Arthritis Research UK and Arthritis Care legally took place in November 2017, as both charities recognised they could have a bigger impact by combining their strengths. The freshly launched Versus Arthritis will work tirelessly to defy arthritis and help people live better with the condition through all means possible. From researching new treatments and cures, to the delivery of ongoing care, support and advice as well as campaigning to increase awareness and perception change of the condition in society.

The challenge cannot be met alone. Working with volunteers, supporters, researchers, healthcare professionals and many more, Versus Arthritis will focus on three priorities:

  • Providing the best-quality services, information, advice and support for people living with arthritis – whenever and however they need it.
  • Campaigning to constantly challenge the current tolerance of arthritis and ensure it is recognised as a priority across the UK, receiving the investment and consideration that it deserves
  • Delivering cutting-edge research to help people live better with their condition

Liam O’Toole, CEO of Versus Arthritis, said:

“Arthritis affects millions of people in the UK every single day, taking away their independence. Imagine not being able to do up your shirt buttons without help or go to the toilet without rails for support. This is the reality that people living with arthritis face every day. Yet for large numbers of the public, arthritis is seen as inevitable, untreatable and “just a bit of pain”. This climate of tolerance is unacceptable and as Versus Arthritis, we want to put an end to it.

“We are excited to be building on the significant legacies and expertise of Arthritis Research UK and Arthritis Care, to have a greater impact on the lives of people with arthritis. And we won’t stop until no-one has to tolerate the pain, fatigue and isolation of arthritis.”

We are Versus Arthritis