Arthritis affects everyone, society meeting hears
At the Arthritis Society annual general meeting Wednesday evening, the message was clear: it’s not just a disease that affects the elderly.
Speakers mentioned young children and working adults who struggle with the chronic pain of the condition.
Maureen Quiqley, incoming national chairwoman of the society, said arthritis affects four million Canadians — 60 per cent of whom are working age.
“Arthritis can affect anyone at any age,” said Brenda Kitchen, executive director for Newfoundland and Labrador. “It can be very debilitating, and we’re talking chronic pain every single day, making the things that you and I take for granted take forever.”
Keith Hutchings, provincial parliamentary secretary for health, spoke at the event, applauding the
– Brenda Kitchen
society and announcing a $50,000 grant from the government.
“ This government realizes the value that groups such as the Arthritis Society bring to this province and to the people affected by the disease,” Hutchings said.
Some of the money will be used, Kitchen said, to develop a marketing strategy to get the arthritis message out to rural Newfoundland.
In smaller communities, she said, its harder to get access to the specialists who can diagnose and treat arthritis.
For that reason, she said, anyone who is suffering from joint pain — even if they don’t have an arthritis diagnosis — should contact the society.