Improving the life of every person in New Zealand affected by arthritis

If you have arthritis, or know someone with arthritis, we are here for you! We provide information, advice and support for anyone diagnosed with arthritis. We can put you in touch with healthcare professionals and other community supports throughout the country.

Our work also includes advocating for people with arthritis, funding research, and contributing to health policy. Arthritis affects more than 624,000 New Zealanders and is a leading cause of disability. There are more than 140 forms of arthritis and there is no cure, but it can usually be managed effectively. Most people with arthritis continue to lead productive and fulfilling lives.

Packaging survey – have your say


We know the problems people with arthritis face with opening packaging,
and we’re collecting information about this in a survey. Have your say here, and see what Fair Go recently broadcast about this very frustrating
packaging business.

Number of people (15 years and older) with arthritis in New Zealand (2016)


The ‘Your Community, Your Voice’ Bloggers

Rolleston drop-in clinics for arthritis questions – October 17th and Nov 14th

Come along to this drop-in clinic on 17 October 2017 from 11.30am-2.30pm. Broadlands Drive, Rolleston. Arthritis Educators Carolyn Wood and Allan Desquitado will answer any questions you may have about living with arthritis. The Foyer, Selwyn Aquatic Centre. No swim...

Free phone support in Waikato from Arthritis NZ

People with arthritis in the Waikato DHB area now have access to personalised telephone support from Arthritis New Zealand. The service is designed to help people manage their pain and other symptoms, improve their quality of life and slow the progression of the...

Our new CEO It is with great pleasure we announce the appointment of Philip Kearney as the Chief Executive Officer at Arthritis New Zealand. Philip's many accomplishments include his roles as Director, Development and Alumni Relations at the University of Otago,...

Applications open for Arthritis NZ Children’s Camp, Feb 2018

Do you have a child who has been diagnosed with arthritis or another rheumatological condition in the past year? Applications are now invited for places at the 2018 Arthritis New Zealand Children’s Camp on 23 – 25 February, 2018 in Matamata. What does camp involve?...

Questions about arthritis answered, Island Bay, 9 November

Questions​ ​about​ ​arthritis? Come​ ​along​ ​and​ ​learn​ ​more​ ​with​ ​Arthritis Educator​ ​Zoe​ ​Pullman​ ​in​ ​a​ ​small,​ ​friendly​ ​group clinic.​ ​Topics​ ​include​ ​exercise,​ ​managing​ ​pain and​ ​fatigue,​ ​medications,​ ​and​ ​sleep. When: Thursday​ ​9​...

Arthritis & physical activity, Upper Hutt, 2 November

Come along and find out more about the role of exercise in managing arthritis, and the activities available in your community.   When: Thursday 2 November 2017, 11.00am -12.30pm Where: YMCA, Somme Road,Heretaunga, Upper Hutt Presenters Arthritis Educator:  Robyn Tuohy...

Arthritis questions answered, Paraparaumu, November 3

Come​ ​along​ ​and​ ​learn​ ​more​ ​with​ ​Arthritis​ ​Educator Zoe​ ​Pullman​ ​in​ ​a​ ​small,​ ​friendly​ ​group​ ​clinic.​ ​Topics include​ ​exercise,​ ​managing​ ​pain​ ​and​ ​fatigue, medications,​ ​and​ ​sleep. When: Friday​ ​3​ ​November,​ ​2017, 10.30am​ ​–​...

Pain workshop in Petone, 8 November

Long-term pain does not have to rule your life. Come along and learn about how pain works and ways to promote recovery. When Wednesday 8 November from 10.30am-12 midday Where Petone Workingmen’s Club, 47 Udy St, Petone Arthritis NZ Educator Robyn Tuohy To book your...

Exercise classes in Christchurch

Are you living with arthritis? Try our exercise classes. Exercise is one of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to manage pain and improve mobility if you have arthritis. Call today to sign up for weekly sessions over 13 weeks. When Tuesdays, from 26 September,...

ASB Summer Starter 2017

The ASB Summer Starter is a 10km fun run or walk from New Brighton Pier to Redcliff’s Park in Christchurch. Taking place on Sunday, 26th November Cantabrians and visitors to the region will be able to walk, run, skip, or roll the 10km course and fundraise...

Hand hub: Exercises for thumb arthritis

Exercise for thumb arthritis There is increasing evidence for the benefits of strengthening exercises for thumb arthritis. Exactly which exercises? Still nothing specific from the literature! Go for pain-free We try and give pain-free exercises whenever we can,...

Kate Meldrum: My disease has made me a better person

“Your disease is something you have, not who you are.” “Don’t let your disease define you.” These are common phrases those with chronic illness often hear. When I think about it the flip side of these sayings, though, I realise that chronic illness is a major factor...

Sarah Shelton: Taking care of you

It’s pretty easy to forget about looking after ourselves some days, especially if we have a lot of things going on, or we are having a bad health day. A chronic health condition certainly makes this a little harder than ‘normal’, and the stress of daily living can get...

Olivia Hall: Mobility parking… a perk you really don’t want!

Yes, I know I am young and to you I look perfectly healthy sitting inside my car. I can see it in your eyes – you have already judged me before I’ve even attempted to move. I bet you didn't know that I get nervous butterflies every time I pull into that park. I...

Hotriggeredkiwi: All in a day’s work

Oh bother, it’s time; and, look, outside it’s dark and raining again. No, it’s hail too, wow, it must be cold, time for the Swanndri. Bah, it’s a struggle, what is it now? Oh of course, yesterday on the river with the whitebaiters in the rain, must’ve gotten wetter...

Hotriggeredkiwi: No one said it would be easy

This blog takes six hours to write up, on average. During the working week I spend a total of 56 hours at home, including sleep time. I struggle with reading and writing, always have, probably always will. What to say? Where to start? Letters, words, and sentences...

Alison Wilding: Exercises for thumb arthritis

Exercise for thumb arthritis An increasing body of evidence is out there for the benefits of strengthening exercises for thumb arthritis. Exactly which exercises? Still nothing specific from the literature! Go for pain-free We try and give pain-free exercises whenever...

Alison Wilding: OA of the thumb

Osteoarthritis of the thumb is one of the main arthritic problems that a hand therapist* can help with. The joint in question is the one at the very base of the thumb down near the wrist joint. You may hear the term ‘CMC’ joint being referred to, or the ‘basal joint...

Kylie Frost: Dinner won’t cook itself, but how do I open all of the product packaging?

It is 6 o'clock at night and I have finally finished work for the day. I head to the fridge to check what I can cook for dinner. In another life I was a chef and loved to cook. Now I dread it. Oh goody, mince again. Maybe lasagne? The thought fills me with dread. Not...

Hotriggeredkiwi: Never let the bastard (arthritis) win

The iciness quickly cut through to the bone as I walked to the beach. Then the pain transferred to the cutting of razor sharp edges of oyster shells and dull bites of stones on bones as they hit pressure points of my feet.

Val Bird: To loo or not to loo, that is the question!

I started gripping the toilet-roll-holder as a ‘push me up.’ However, while this helped me to get back on my feet, it still caused a nasty crunching pain in my knee. I was also concerned that one day the toilet roll holder would give way, causing both me and the toilet wall a significant problem.

Gezellig: How arthritis has made me stronger

what’s often overlooked with many chronic illnesses and disabilities is the way they can shape you in positive ways as a person. I think I would have grown up to relate to the world in a different way if I hadn’t had arthritis since childhood; not necessarily in a better way or a worse way, just differently. Some of the aspects of my character that I’m most proud of have, I think, been enhanced by the experiences I’ve had. Let me elaborate.

Sarah S: “Open here” a letter to pharmaceutical companies about medication packaging

Dear pharmaceutical companies,

I’m really reliant on you guys right now. These last few weeks I’ve realised just how reliant.

You see, I need your medications to lower my immune system’s response. Your creations keep me moving. They give me the ability to get up in the morning, care for my children, walk my youngest daughter to school, go to work, attend university, use a knife and fork, cook meals, and sometimes if I’m lucky, they give me the energy to catch up with my friends and have a good time.

Jane Messer: Should we all move to Arizona or Queensland?

Find what works for you. Keep some energy for enjoyable activities. Hang in there and don’t go it alone – reach out for support. Spring is just around the corner!

Erin: When the glass is half empty, not half full

I would encourage you not to be afraid or embarrassed to talk to your GP or rheumatologist if you’re struggling with insomnia, anxiety, mood swings, lack of appetite or feelings of exhaustion. Six months on an antidepressant or anti-anxiety medication may make all the difference to you. It never hurts to ask.

Daniel Umaga: On becoming a beacon for those with Gout

A key task for me in my work at Arthritis New Zealand is promoting awareness and services about gout amongst Pacific communities. Gout is the second most common form of arthritis in New Zealand and more prevalent here per head of population than anywhere else in the world. More than 160,000 people were diagnosed with gout in 2014 and 22,000 of these were Pacific people.

Valma: Don’t throw out the lady with the bathwater

I learnt a lesson last year while taking this arthritic body on holiday. Here we were in scenic Queenstown on a coach tour when a last-minute change of hotels meant my request for a room with a walk-in shower was a ‘no go.’ All the rooms in this hotel had a shower...

Hotriggeredkiwi: Daydreaming in Aotearoa

As with anything else, the tougher and more distant the gain, the more satisfying the reward. Walking to location in the pre-dawn half-light, I’m sure that my forever trusty tripod has turned into the heaviest dark slithering wet beastie with a life of its own.

Tim Neal: “Art” is the name of the unwanted guest at my place

Today’s words come to you courtesy of something all who live with ART (my nickname for arthritis) will understand, I'm sure. Next month I take part in my toughest cycling challenge yet – the Le Mans Pearl Izumi 24H Velo. Apart from the physical training, the mental...

Cyclist Tim keeps moving – in spite of arthritis

Tim Neal lives with osteoarthritis and has endured several major operations on his joints. But that won’t stop him competing next month in the Le Mans Pearl Izumi 24 hour cycling race in France and raising money for Arthritis New Zealand. Tim was first diagnosed with...

Research Projects Requiring Participants

Do you have osteoarthritis of your ankle or hand? If so, we want to hear from you.


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