The Cyprus Association of Rheumatologists organizes for the 23rd consecutive year the Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal Diseases Awareness and Awareness Week, from May 4th to May 14th. The main topic of the week is ¨invisible¨ Rheumatoid diseases in the workplace.
Statistically one in four citizens worldwide have some form of rheumatism, which makes rheumatism the number one cause of morbidity worldwide. In Cyprus, approximately 100 thousand citizens have been diagnosed with some form of rheumatism, while rheumatism is also the first cause of physical disability and the second cause of job loss.
The prevention and early diagnosis of rheumatic diseases is perhaps the most important pillar of the effective treatment and prevention of the negative effects and damages of these diseases on the individual himself but also in reducing the economic burden that these diseases have on society in general.
Mrs. Andri Foka Charalambous, president of the Cyprus Association of Rheumatologists, in her speech referred to the term “invisible rheumatisms” but also to the goals of the Association through this year's information campaign “The word invisible means something or someone that is impossible to you see. This is exactly what we mean by the phrase invisible rheumatic diseases. They are the rheumatic diseases whose effects cannot be seen from a simple visual contact with the person. In order to be able to understand the needs, understand and be aware of the person diagnosed with one of these diseases, you have to associate with them, live with them or work with them. Individuals do not have a regular steady course over the course of the day or days. For some of these people for days weeks maybe months many times they are very well without symptoms and it's like they don't have the condition, and suddenly one day it can be the complete opposite without warning. People who are ill most often have no discernible disabilities for it and are asked to constantly explain their condition and the difficulties they face. This year we want to emphasize the need to create regulations and structures for the inclusion of these people in work but also to maintain it”
The Minister of Labor and Social Insurance, Mr. Yiannis Panagiotou, also addressed a related greeting, mentioning, among other things, the Ministry's plans to ensure safe and healthy working conditions for employees “The Ministry of Labor, in collaboration with the Federation of Cyprus Patient Associations (OSAK), of the organization which represents all patient organizations, including the Rheumatoid Association of Cyprus, has announced Grant Plans for the recruitment of people with chronic diseases, with a total budget of 5 million euros. The projects, which are co-financed by the European Social Fund of the European Union and the Republic of Cyprus, aim to encourage employers to hire people with chronic diseases”, while he also referred to alternative forms of employment such as the bill on telework that you expect to be passed in 2023.
The Awareness Week with the slogan “DO YOU TOO FEEL INVISIBLE?” takes place within the framework of the support services, education and asserting the rights of patients with Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal diseases in Cyprus and is under the auspices of the Honorable Minister of Labor Mr. Yiannis Panagiotou and the National Commission for Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal Diseases.
Program of events
- Saturday 6 May 2023, 17:00-19:00.Interactive activity with a Psychologist and Physiotherapist, for the World Ankylosing Spondylitis Day – SyReK Head Offices, Agias Elenis 13, 1056, Lycabettus, Nicosia
- Sunday 7 May 2023, 10:00 – 12:00.Event “I swim for my fellow man 2023” in memory of Panikos Iakovos – ; Limassol Olympic Swimming Pool.
- Wednesday 10 May 2023, 20:00.Lighting of public buildings in all the provinces of Cyprus, for World Lupus Day and World Fibromyalgia Day on 10-12 May
- Thursday 11 May 2023, 17:00 – 19:00.Information Day “Invisible Disabilities and Work” – University of Nicosia, Unesco Auditorium.
- Sunday May 14, 2023, 9:30-11:00. Tree planting for World Lupus and Fibromyalgia Day – SyReK Head Office, 13 Agia Elenis, 1056, Lykavitos, Nicosia.
Long-term Sponsor: Universal life
Sponsors: Cyprus Pain Clinic, Genesis Pharma, MSD, Pfizer & Roche
Supporters: University of Nicosia, Pan-Cypriot Volunteer Coordinating Council, Cyprus Patient Associations Federation (OSAK), PEO, Cyprus Psychologists Association, KEBE, OEB, Pan-Cypriot Association of Occupational Therapists, PASYDY.
More information can be found on the official page https://www.facebook.com/cyplar or by phone at 22428285.