Karen, age 70
“I dream all primary practices will one day work in partnership with organisations such as Arthritis New Zealand.”
Karen (70) from Dunedin is retired after many years working in and around the health care sector. She is currently involved in her local community health council. Karen has Osteoarthritis and CPPD and wants government to know the barriers that having arthritis gives people.
“I urge everyone who is affected by arthritis to write to your MP and tell them what it is like for you. Tell them how important it is to have support with this disability, how it means to sit on the side-line at events because your pain and lessened mobility means you cannot join in. How it affects your employment opportunities because you need frequent breaks or cannot manage being on your feet for too long, or you cannot do certain tasks because you cannot use your painful hands well enough. Most importantly how all of this affects your bottom line – cost of transport, appointments, medications, treatments.”
Karen also hopes that organisations like ours will receive more of their funds from the government in future.
“I dream all primary practices will one day work in partnership with organisations such as Arthritis New Zealand, so consumers will know what is available to support them to make the best of every day as they go about their lives – the sorts of things that a GP can’t provide given time and cost constraints, but the organisation can. Part of my dream is that these organisations are funded by the government as part and parcel of health care.”
Ask political parties their policies on improving services for people with arthritis
As we approach the election this year we are asking people affected by arthritis to ask the main political parties some key questions about arthritis and its management. We are asking supporters to focus on the three main forms of arthritis: osteoarthritis, gout arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis (including other forms of inflammatory arthritis), and we have one question about each of these conditions. All you need to do to help make an impact is send your letter!