Arthritis Foundation Kicks Off Arthritis Awareness Month with Release of Key Findings from Patient Study, Announces Launch of New App

Report represents one of the nation's largest studies of people living with arthritis.

ATLANTA, May 3, 2021 -- The Arthritis Foundation, the nation's leading organization dedicated to improving the lives of the over 54 million people in the United States living with arthritis, today released results of its How it Hurts report – one of the most comprehensive collections of data from people with arthritis ever conducted. The report also comes with the announcement of a new tool to help arthritis patients manage their chronic pain: Vim, the Arthritis Foundation's mobile app.

How it Hurts Report
The second annual report showcases key findings from the Arthritis Foundation's ongoing Live Yes! INSIGHTS study, with responses from nearly 40,000 patients across all 50 states – 20,000 of which were collected from December 2019 to October 2020. Completed in partnership with the Dartmouth Institute Center for Program Design and Evaluation, the study allows the Arthritis Foundation to dig deeper into the root causes of pain and just how much it impacts patients' abilities to do activities big and small.

"While pain is still the number-one challenge facing the arthritis community, the COVID-19 pandemic made managing it all the more difficult," said Steven Taylor, Executive Vice President of Mission and Strategic Initiatives for the Arthritis Foundation. "So many patients were unable to partake in activities to help treat their pain, and many were living in fear with already compromised immune systems."

In particular, this year's report found patients reported increased feelings of fatigue and worse sleep quality than they did the previous year, and they also had more trouble starting new tasks. Notable statistics also show that arthritis patients experience higher levels of pain than the rest of the population who reports to be in pain. In fact, four out of five arthritis patients experience more difficulties in their ability to function physically than the general population.

Additionally, the report shows that pain disproportionately affects patients due to socioeconomic status, access to care, language barriers and other factors. For example, 83% of patients with a low income (<$15,000 per year) experience moderate to severe impacts on their daily lives. For the full report, visit arthritis.org/HowItHurts.

"In order to better serve the entire arthritis community, it's critical that we hear from patients from underrepresented and underserved populations," said Taylor. "Their experiences will help us work to close the gaps in access to and quality of care – and ultimately, shape a brighter future for all people living with arthritis."

To share your voice and be among those changing the future of arthritis, take the 10-minute survey by visiting arthritis.org/INSIGHTS.

Vim: The New Mobile App
Also set to launch during Arthritis Awareness Month is Vim, a new app built to give arthritis patients greater power over their pain. The free app will feature a tracking function to help patients set and achieve six-week goals, along with a community of patient support and encouragement. In addition, the app will provide customized educational resources tailored to a user's specific condition.

Taylor said the Foundation developed the app in response to the chronic pain people with arthritis experience every day.

"By definition, 'vim' means energy and enthusiasm, and that's exactly what the app is meant to be," said Taylor. "The app will provide patients with constant companionship and inspiration to take back what pain has stolen from them over the years."

Vim will be available for iOS and Android devices later this month. Sign up at arthritis.org/Vim to be the first to know when it's released.

About the Arthritis Foundation:
The Arthritis Foundation is fighting for all people who live with arthritis. As a Champion of Yes, it's the Arthritis Foundation's mission to turn the obstacles arthritis causes into opportunities. The Arthritis Foundation champions life-changing solutions and medical advancements, and it also provides ways for people to connect, break down barriers in health care and join the fight for a cure — uniting hearts, minds and resources to change the future of arthritis. To join the fight to cure arthritis, visit arthritis.org.

CONTACT:
Margo Fischgrund
412-414-9960
[email protected]indfulKreative.com

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