• The Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Alliance (ARMA) is the umbrella body for the arthritis and musculoskeletal community in the UK, and our mission is to transform the quality of life of people with musculoskeletal conditions. We have 40 member organisations ranging from specialised support groups for rare diseases to major research charities and national professional bodies.

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Commissioning musculoskeletal services in England

Read ARMA’s Key Messages for Commissioners

Our lifestyles can be more unhealthy than we think. Start the fight back to a healthier you.

One You is a ground-breaking new campaign from Public Health England to help adults across the country avoid future diseases caused by our lifestyles. Avoidable, unhealthy behaviours are responsible for around 40% of all deaths in England, and costs the NHS more than £11 billion a year.

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To stay healthy, it’s recommended to do at least 150 minutes of moderate activity every week. ‘One You’ provides practical tools and encouragement for adults to reappraise their lifestyle.

Click here for the facts and stats, press releases, media details and the Health Quiz.

ARMA has a new telephone number: 0203 856 1978

Please note our new Skype-for-Business office number.

Musculoskeletal and Arthritis News

Job vacancy - Professional Engagement Manager - Arthritis Research UK

Arthritis Research UK are looking for a Professional Engagement Manager who will operate as part of a growing Professional Engagement team. The team are shaping and delivering a programme of impactful work to engage, inspire and educate professionals to deliver high quality care and support to people with arthritis and other musculoskeletal (MSK) conditions.Location: Chesterfield or LondonHours: Full-time, 35 hours per week Salary: £35,000 - £38,000 + BenefitsContract type: 12 months maternity cover Closing date: Midnight, Sunday 31 July 2016See the job description and person specification on the arthritisresearchuk.org Work for Us page.

For the NHS, multidisciplinary working is the way forward

It’s hard to describe a month like the one we’ve just had, which has been characterised by many positive things for our community, but overshadowed by external events. Like me, many of you will feel worried and dismayed at the result of the EU referendum. There is no denying that whatever the practical implications of it – politically, for the NHS, for our respective areas of work – and whatever actually ends up happening at the end of what could well turn out to be a long and winding road, this result casts tremendous uncertainty over the UK, and Europe, ...

HMSA Bristol Mini-Symposium

The HMSA offers education for patients and professionals while campaigning for earlier diagnosis to help reduce potential disability. Bringing local professionals to events where they can mix, learn and work with HMSA members, expert patients and trained volunteers can be a real benefit to all involved.The HMSA Bristol Mini-Symposium on Saturday the 20th August will allow an opportunity for education and to try hydrotherapy. Led by Dr Alan Hakim, the HMSA medical team will be working both with patients and local professionals with an interest in hypermobility syndromes. You can book your tickets here.Unable to make it to Bristol? We'll ...

Spotlight on RA - New survey

New survey highlights importance of good dialogue between doctors and patients in RA.Over three quarters (77%) of people living with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) feel comfortable discussing their diagnosis with their healthcare professional, a new survey reveals. But there are still challenges for some people with RA that may impact the extent to which they are able to manage their condition and take control of their lives.The survey was commissioned by NRAS and pharmaceutical company, Lilly, ahead of a parliamentary event to mark Rheumatoid Arthritis Awareness Week and aimed at empowering RA patients.  The results emphasised the importance of promoting public ...

RA magazine supplement and response to the PM

Rheumatoid Arthritis supplement To help raise the awareness of Arthritis Week last week, BSR and NRAS have come together to produce a supplement focusing on Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). The supplement was featured in The Guardian, bringing attention to the public about the impacts and implications that RA can have on people's everyday lives.Inside there's articles from Laura Guest, Chief Executive Officer of BSR, Alisa Bosworth MBE, Chief Executive of NRAS, Dr Peter Lanyon, BSR President, Dr Jill Firth, BHPR President and much more! View the online supplement of Rheumatoid Arthritis online. RCN Consultation Response to the Prime MinisterLast week ...

Guest Blog: All hands on deck to tackle rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases

by Dr Peter Lanyon, Consultant Rheumatologist, Nottingham University Hospital; President, British Society for RheumatologyTwo months ago, at our annual national conference on the banks of the Clyde, it was a privilege to start my elected term of office as President of the British Society for Rheumatology. And I’m very excited to be serving BSR in this role. Our members are front-line clinicians, nurses and allied health professionals working across the health community. Every day, and sometimes 24/7, they deliver care to try and improve the lives of people living with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases. I’d like to share with you ...

Job Opportunity: Outreach Coordinator

Outreach Coordinator (15 hours per week, home-based) PMRGCAuk is a small charity, which has developed a range of services for people with Polymyalgia Rheumatica and/or Giant Cell Arteritis and those who work with them, including clinicians and carers. These include our national helpline, regular newsletter, network of Support Groups and Meet Ups, website, web-based forum and information service. We are seeking a skilled Outreach Coordinator to support and develop our growing network of Support Groups and Meet Ups. This is a role for a pro-active, dependable and versatile person with excellent people skills. We are recruiting for a one-year post initially, but ...

Welsh Assembly Statement of Opinion and Research Blog

The very first Statement of Opinion in the new Welsh Assembly following the elections was tabled to welcome Arthritis Care Week and to recognise the impact of arthritis in Wales.Twenty four Assembly Members have signed the statement to engage with Arthritis Care to improve understanding, recognition, support and services for people living with arthritis in Wales. The statement can be viewed here.On the 13th June 2016, The National Assembly for Wales Research Service published an article 'Arthritis & musculoskeletal conditions - chronically under prioritised?' as part of their ‘In Brief’ blog series, which posts short, topical and accessible articles on ...

NICE and SMC appraisal of secukinumab for ankylosing spondylitis

The first NICE committee meeting for the Single Technology Appraisal of secukinumab for AS was held on 21 June. Sally Dickinson attended to represent NASS. Her comments were based on the NASS professional organisation submission to NICE, which, in turn, was based on the survey NASS carried out in January 2016 among people with AS. We are now waiting for NICE to produce the Appraisal Consultation Document (ACD).NASS also made a submission to the Scottish Medicines Consortium who held their committee meeting on 7 June and are expected to report by 12 July.Secukinumab is not an anti TNF. It is ...

BIMM – June 2016 Diary of events and courses

Diary details of the coming courses and events from the British Instutute of Musculoskeletal Medicine.Dates include the Monthly MSK Meeting; the Injection RoadShow in October; and the BIMM Winter Symposium.Open and download the June 2016 BIMM Diary for more details.

Six principles for engaging people and communities

The People and Communities Board, one of the Five Year Forward View programme boards, has published Six principles for engaging people and communities: putting them into practice. The principles offer a practical steer on developing the 'new relationship with people and communities' set out in the Five Year Forward View. The six principles aim to help build knowledge, confidence and motivation to develop person centred, community-focussed approaches to health and care. The principles will be useful for anyone engaged in transforming health and care - including Sustainability and Transformation Plan leads, local authorities, CCGs, NHS Trusts, GP surgeries, frontline staff, and the ...

FSEM release publication: A Fresh Approach in Practice

The burden of musculoskeletal (MSK) problems and physical inactivity in the UK is now significant, and the Faculty of Sport and Exercise Medicine (FSEM) has produced A Fresh Approach in Practice, NHS information document, which provides working examples of the benefits of Sport and Exercise Medicine services to patients and the NHS.The document includes six key points for commissioners and examples of MSK models of care, across both primary and secondary care, showing benefits to patients, improvements, efficiencies and cost savings. Access a handy page turner of the document on the FSEM website.

New Sport England Strategy: Towards an Active Nation

Sport England recently published a new five-year strategy on tackling inactivity.  The strategy aims to help deliver against the five health, social and economic outcomes set out in the Government’s Sporting Future strategy.Sport England says that as well as continuing to support people who already play sport, there will be a much greater emphasis on groups who are typically much less active such as women, disabled people and those from lower-socio-economic backgrounds.You can access the report here https://www.sportengland.org/media/10629/sport-england-towards-an-active-nation.pdf 

BJD Framework for Developing and Evaluating Musculoskeletal Models of Care

The first internationally-informed Framework for Developing and Evaluating Musculoskeletal Models of Care has been developed by a team of Australian researchers in partnership with The Global Alliance for Musculoskeletal Health.What are Models of Care? Models of Care are guides or policies that outline the principles of care for particular conditions and how to implement that care in a local setting.Who is the Framework for? The Framework is intended to help those tasked with planning, implementing or evaluating health services to achieve an optimal Model of Care and its sustainable implementation. While the World Health Organisation has developed a ...

Potential ARMA local network in South Wales

There are several ARMA local networks within the UK and we would like to explore the potential for setting up such a network within South Wales.The initial stage will be arranging a meeting to gauge local interest in such a group and share ideas as to how it can develop.  Please contact David Byfield (University of South Wales) and/or  and Mary Cowern (Arthritis Care Wales) to find out more.

Public Health England launch 'One you' campaign

One You is a ground-breaking new campaign from Public Health England to help adults across the country avoid future diseases caused by our lifestyles. Behaviours such as eating too much unhealthy food, drinking more alcohol than is recommended, continuing to smoke and not being active enough are responsible for around 40% of all deaths in England, and costs the NHS more than £11 billion a year. Yet reduced health in later life is not inevitable. Older people can live as well as young people by making small changes to their habits and lifestyles now.To stay healthy, it's recommended to do ...

New ARMA leaflet released

ARMA released a new A5 leaflet today (click here to open leaflet) to support its activity to promote good musculoskeletal health.  The leaflet features key messages on what is needed to provide the right care for musculoskeletal conditions, in the right place, at the right time.  ARMA members contributed to the leaflet, and member logos are displayed on one side of it.

New report released: Is welfare to work, working well?

On Thursday 26 May 2016, the Work Foundation launched a report “Is welfare to work, working well?” [click to open PDF document] focussing on how current welfare-to-work provision is working for those whose health may be a barrier to working, and highlighting how support might be improved going forward. The report makes a number of recommendations around the forth-coming Health and Work Programme and the upcoming Green Paper. The report highlighted how the Work Capability Assessment (WCA) process to determine eligibility has been a subject of concern in its structure and format, with incorrect and appealed decisions feeding feelings of mistrust ...

Summary of the Fibromyalgia event in the Parliament

On the 11th May 2016, a Fibromyalgia Awareness event took place in Parliament, hosted by Andrea Jenkyns MP, and organised by Fibromyalgia Action UK (FMA UK).The event was well attended by MPs, researchers, healthcare professionals, students and people living with fibromyalgia, their families and carers. There will be some exciting outcomes of this event resulting in greater collaboration of different stakeholders in the fibromyalgia field: patient organisations, healthcare professionals, researchers and policy makers.During the event Dr Toby Garrood, a consultant from the Guy’s Hospital fibromyalgia clinic, gave an overview of the award-winning and excellent fibromyalgia multidisciplinary service, which can act ...

Three Vacancies at Arthritis Research UK

Lifestyles policy implementation managerLocation: Public Health England, London Hours: Full time – 35 hours per week Salary: £46 – 50k + benefits Contract type: 24 months fixed term Closing date: Sunday 5 June 2016 Find out more >Research evaluation managerLocation: London or Chesterfield Hours: Full-time (35 hrs) or part-time Salary: £38,000–41,000 + benefits Contract type: Full-time, permanent Closing date: Sunday 12 June 2016Find out more >Senior public health analystLocation: Public Health England, London Hours: Full time, 35 hours per week Salary: £36 – 40k + benefits Contract type: 24 months fixed term Closing date: ...

Arthritis champions campaign, Scotland

By the time the polls closed, 93 candidates from across all major parties had agreed to become Arthritis Champions. 39 Arthritis Champions have been elected, 30% of all MSPs. This gives us a sizeable base of support to build on within the Scottish Parliament over the next 5 years.  A third of the main ruling parliamentary party (SNP) are committed to our manifesto.During the campaign, nearly 350 supporters across Scotland emailed their election candidates. 3121 emails were sent to candidates asking them to be Arthritis Champions.We are extremely keen to ensure that those MSPs that promised to be champions whilst ...

Shine a Spotlight on RA

Rheumatoid Arthritis Awareness Week 2016NRAS will be hosting its RA Awareness Week (RAAW) 2016 from 13th to 19th June this year. The focus of this week will be on the theme 'Spotlight on RA'. The campaign will have two different elements, for those unaware of RA and NRAS and for those who are living with RA. You can read more them on our RA Awareness Week page.NRAS has produced three awareness week posters, available to highlight three very important aspects of RA •    The cardiovascular risk •    The hidden symptom of depression  •    The risk of developing RA through ...

International EDS Symposium, New York

The International Ehlers-Danlos Symposium convened in New York at the beginning of EDS Awareness Month with a view to exploring developments in research and treatment of the various types of EDS. GPs, physiotherapists, rheumatologists, surgeons, OTs, geneticists, charity representatives, patient experts, non-profit organisations etc., were all given an equal opportunity to come to the microphone and voice their concerns, agreements and questions. The information, discussion and presentations shared in New York will be used by working groups tasked with putting a framework in place to facilitate the building of a revised EDS nosology; better defining each subtype and management of its ...

LUPUS UK on BSR’s Roadmap to Improve Care

….for people living with rare rheumatic and musculoskeletal conditions.The British Society for Rheumatology (BSR) has launched a report setting out a programme of work to enhance care for people with rare rheumatic and musculoskeletal conditions.A collaborative approach to improving outcomes in Rare Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal diseases builds on a national workshop hosted by the BSR in November 2015, which brought together a range of stakeholders to help raise the priority of rare rheumatic and musculoskeletal conditions and improve patient care.A key theme to emerge from the workshop was the need for greater cross-sector collaboration and this report sets out a ...

World Lupus Day 2016 Report

This year’s World Lupus Day was very successful, receiving a lot of support and engagement from our members and other supporters. LUPUS UK hosted a couple of large events to support the campaign this year.On Saturday 7th May we hosted a Lupus Information Day in Glasgow. The event was attended by approximately 130 people and featured presentations from guest speakers about a variety of ‘lupus-related’ topics.The presentations were:“THE WORK OF LUPUS UK” - Chris Maker, Director LUPUS UK“LUPUS TREATMENTS NEW AND OLD” & “LUPUS IN PREGNANCY – WHAT ARE THE CONCERNS?” - Dr Gillian Roberts, Consultant Rheumatologist, Royal Alexandra Hospital, ...

Guest Blog: Solving the puzzle of Musculoskeletal Service transformation

by Professor Peter Kay, National Clinical Director for Musculoskeletal Services for NHS England. I was asked to write a blog to raise the profile of my MSK work supported by the Long-Term Conditions Team and, through the cryptic labyrinth of various schemes and initiatives, share with you my thoughts on how we can support sustainable, cost-effective transformation whilst still championing the more person-centred approach. Easy task right? Increasingly we are faced with the challenge of implementing population-level interventions in a bid to tackle unwarranted variation within our local areas. At the same time, many of us are striving to strike a balance that ...

A collaborative approach to improving outcomes

...in Rare Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal diseasesEarlier this month BSR launched report setting out a programme of work to enhance the care for people with rare rheumatic and musculoskeletal conditions.The report comes at an important time for rare diseases. Two years on from the launch of the UK Rare Disease Strategy, much of the focus has been on Genomics and the 80% of all rare diseases that have a genetic origin. However, BSR believes that greater priority should be given to the non-hereditary rare conditions, of which the rare inflammatory and autoimmune diseases are a very important component. These related conditions ...

Shared learning workshops in Greater Manchester

Peer Support and Supporting Self ManagementNational Voices' Wellbeing Our Way programme and Macc are hosting two shared learning workshops bringing together people working in charities, wider health and care organisations, and those with lived experience from across Greater Manchester to develop approaches which enable people to live well.These are a great opportunity for shared learning between staff working directly with people with long term health needs, as well as those who are commissioning and developing these approaches.Read more here. How Does the EU Affect Health and Wellbeing in the UK? National Voices has compiled a briefing to ...

Effective role of Fracture Liaison Services highlighted

Fracture Liaison Services are an effective way to prevent further fragility fractures and save the NHS money, a new report from the Royal College of Physicians says. But the study also reveals that most services are not currently funded to match the level of patient need.Click here to read the FLS-DB facilities audit - FLS breakpoint: opportunities for improving patient care following a fragility fractureAnne Thurston, Head of Policy at the National Osteoporosis Society said: "We have long championed the role Fracture Liaison Services play in preventing fragility fractures, saving the NHS money and improving the quality of people's lives."Osteoporosis ...

Spotlight on Prevention: Support for STP footprints

The development of Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) will require local health and care partners to work together in new and different ways. National health and care bodies are working closely with STP footprints to support them to do this. The Chartered Society of Physiotherapy, National Osteoporosis Society and ARMA contributed to the guidance for STP footprints. This page on the NHS England website contains some support tools and guidance for STP footprint leads and their teams.


ARMA is the alliance providing a collective voice for the arthritis and musculoskeletal community in the UK.

Together, ARMA and its member organisations work to improve quality of life for all those living with musculoskeletal (MSK) disorders in the UK.

We aim to foster co-operation between charities and professional organisations, working to enhance understanding and mutual support between individuals and organisational bodies.