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WASHINGTON The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Arthritis Foundation in early February announced a major initiative to dramatically reduce the impact of osteoarthritis on Americans. In conjunction with the announcement, the Arthritis Foundation and the Ad Council are unveiling a national public awareness campaign in response to the recommendations outlined in the action plan, "A National Public Health Agenda for Osteoarthritis."
The Agenda is the result of an 18-month effort by the CDC and the Arthritis Foundation that included the development of two working groups, one focusing on research interventions and the other on policy/communications efforts, and a major summit that brought together more than 75 stakeholders to determine the best strategies for reducing the impact of osteoarthritis.
“This important report will help the public health community speak with a unified voice and focus our collective efforts on actions that we know will make a difference in the lives of people suffering from osteoarthritis,” stated Ursula Bauer, director of CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.
Already the nation’s most common cause of disability, the impact of arthritis is slated to increase in the decades to come. One-in -ive adults in the United States (46 million people) has arthritis and an estimated 67 million people will be affected by 2030.
Osteoarthritis, the most common form of arthritis, is a serious and painful joint disease that currently affects nearly 27 million people in the United States and costs an estimated $5,700 annually per person living with the disease. With the combination of inactivity, obesity, injury and the aging of Americans, the rising prevalence of osteoarthritis is expected to escalate the severe health and economic effects of this disease.