14th Eular Autumn Conference for PARE

November 2011 Eumusc.net was lucky enough to be invited to the 14th EULAR Autumn Conference for People with Arthritis/Rheumatism in Europe. The conference, held in Athens, saw over 130 delegates from 35 countries participate in discussions involving the value and place of physical activity and exercise programs in the management of musculoskeletal conditions as well as the strategies for information and lobbying. This was the first time that an ‘outside’ project has attended the conference and we were very excited at the prospect of being able to disseminate our findings and future workings with such an important audience.


Our stand was available for delegates to visit throughout the conference and was manned by Babette Anhalt and Katie Edwards who provided information and answered delegate questions. Packs of key musculoskeletal health statistic factsheets containing all 27 EU Member States were available for delegates to read and take away. Leaflets outlining the general overview of the project were also available and delegates were able to sign up to our mailing list to receive information on project progress, news and alerts for newly available data. The stand attracted a great deal of interest and demonstrated/confirmed the high levels of encouragement and support which the project received throughout the conference. All of the ideas and comments that were raised have given us a great deal to think about!


The opening day of the meeting, also saw a workshop centred on eumusc.net chaired by Ingemar Petersson. Over 30 participants were introduced to the eumusc.net project including the development of the European Standards of Care (SoC) and Healthcare Quality Indicators (HCQI). The workshop was spilt into several groups who were asked to answer a variety of questions including ‘What could be the role of PARE members in the audit process within eumusc.net?’ This question in particular drew out many useful ideas including patients and patient organisations being involved in post translational adaptations of SoC and HCQI. A big thanks to all of those who participated in the workshop and showed such a high level of engagement.


We also received significant support from delegates offering their help in translating and providing missing data for our key musculoskeletal health statistic factsheets. These factsheets are available for download on our project website (www.eumusc.net) making them highly adaptable for updating when new and relevant data is available. Indeed, one of the main aims for the project is to provide a live and sustainable source of information for all those wishing to gain knowledge regarding musculoskeletal health. The help of patients and patient organisations will undoubtedly help to not only increase the accessibility and quality of data/information but also secure the sustainability of the project in the future.

Certainly, we very much hope that our work with patients and patient organisations continues to grow, in the quest to create a sustainable and relevant network which will continue to provide a gold standard of information regarding musculoskeletal health. From all of us here at the eumusc.net project we would like to express our warmest thanks to all of the delegates and organisers for taking such high interest in the project and welcoming us so warmly to the extremely informative conference.

Ingemar Petersson

“ Just outside Athens along the beautiful Greek Riviera the 14thPARE EULAR conference was organized with more than 160 delegates from more than 35 countries in Europe participating. With a high level of engagement, different topics such as the value and the place of physical activities and exercise in the treatment as well as strategies for information and lobbying on RMD’s were discussed. Further, different projects relevant for the European patients in collaboration with the rheumatologists and the health care team were presented and discussed including the EUMUSC.NET project, the Fit for Work project and also projects for young patients.”