Recognized as a world leader in the fight to cure arthritis — providing trusted resources while advancing science, advocacy and community connections — the Arthritis Foundation is actively participating in the 2019 Peking University International Osteoarthritis (OA) Forum, September 7-8, in Beijing, China.
Representing the Arthritis Foundation are leaders Ann M. Palmer, Guy Eakin, PhD, and Angie Botto-van Bemden, PhD. The forum is jointly sponsored by OA Research Society International and the International Chinese Osteoarthritis Research Society.
Dr. Botto-van Bemden, director of OA programs, will lead a presentation about the Foundation’s experience in international task force collaboration, patient engagement, research sponsorship and interactions with regulatory agencies. The Arthritis Foundation has been heavily involved in each of those areas since we were established in 1948.
International task force collaboration, research and patient engagement
The Arthritis Foundation has over 70 years of collaborative research experience in the U.S. Our reach expanded in 2016 when Ann Palmer, president and CEO, and Dr. Eakin, senior vice president of scientific strategy, were instrumental in the Arthritis Foundation becoming a founding member of the OA Foundation International (OAFI) OA Task Force.
Ann explains the importance of this international effort: “The OA Task Force allows organizations to work collaboratively, maximizing resources and creating a stronger common knowledge of OA and its prevention, treatment and disease progression.”
In 2017, Dr. Botto-van Bemden began working with the OA Task Force on a project that continues to help us understand patient perceptions about the disease, how it affects qualify of life and treatment options. This year, messages from OA patients shared with us have been presented in Paris, Toronto, Madrid, and now Beijing.
International interaction with regulatory agencies and patient engagement
The Arthritis Foundation continues to highlight patient input we got when we started the process with our OA Voice of the Patient report. This important 2017 report captures treatment options most important to patients. It was one of the influential documents used by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to draft updated OA research and treatment guidance. Dr. Botto-van Bemden continues to work with the FDA to ensure OA patients’ voices are heard.
International advocacy and patient engagement
Part of the advocacy messaging being shared globally with other OA-related organizations includes what we continue to learn from patients. We’re working to champion development of consistent treatment management messaging for health care providers (HCPs) who interact with OA patients. This will help HCPs, regardless of their specialty or location, develop best care plans based on needs patients express.
“We are happy to share our vision of integrated, whole-person care, personalized based on each patient’s purpose for living well with OA,” says Dr. Botto-van Bemden.
“It can be challenging for patients to receive different recommendations from different HCPs and researchers. Sometimes the advice given to a patient may be inadequate because the HCP has not been trained on the most up-to-date OA management options available. Patients should be allowed to flourish by receiving consistent messaging regarding treatment options, no matter where they live.”