Thanks to all who got involved, the first ever WORD Day was a resounding success and solid starting point to build on for the future WORD Day events. You can view the Impact Report for the 2019 WORD Day here.
PLEASE GET INVOLVED IN HELPING US TO SPREAD THE WORD THAT CHILDREN AND YOUNG PEOPLE GET RHEUMATIC DISEASES TOO
WORD Day will be an annual event that will take place on the 18th of March from 2019 onwards. Through the international networks of PReS and ENCA, we hope that diverse local events will be designed and implemented by a local organizing committees in each country, to be run in hospital, universities and public areas (e.g. schools, museums, town centres). These are anticipated to include information stalls, talks and performances given by patients, information and training events for healthcare professionals, ‘peer education’ workshops involving medical student organisations. WORD Day will also involve a number of assertive social media campaigns including the patient voice, patient organisations and charities, promotional educational videos, radio and TV interviews with patients and doctors will accompany these events, each directed at a specific audience. In particular, WORD day will target doctors who are the first clinicians to come into contact with these patients (e.g. general pediatricians), parents, other health practitioners, educators. Materials to support the running of these events will be available through the PReS and ENCA websites in due course.
The ultimate aim of WORD Day is to raise the awareness and knowledge level of parents, doctors, primary practitioners, teachers, and the general public to help first and foremost in early diagnoses, and a quick referral to specialized pediatric rheumatologists. We hope that awareness will have a ripple effect on all levels of practitioners who come in contact with these children, improving the level of treatment they receive and their prognosis worldwide. We would encourage all EMERGE members to start thinking about how they can celebrate WORD Day, through local events and by contributing to the social media campaign. If you are aware of any patients or patient organisations that would like to get involved in WORD Day please ask them to contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information. EMERGE members are also encourages to make contact with the WORD Day organisers with their ideas and plans.