Where is Arthritis?

    Month-long BC tour to raise arthritis awareness launches in Vancouver

    VANCOUVER, Aug. 28 /CNW/ - As a part of National Arthritis Month this
September, the arthritis community in BC today launched the Where is
Arthritis? provincial tour in Vancouver.
    Starting with a special launch event at the False Creek Community Centre,
the Where is Arthritis? tour will take arthritis "on the road" to raise
awareness for better care, education and prevention of the disease. The
Vancouver event features an official launch ceremony, the debut of a specially
produced video supporting the tour, and a free, public arthritis diagnostic
screening from 11a.m. - 1p.m.
    "Although it affects one in six British Columbians, many people are
unaware of how common arthritis is. The Where is arthritis? provincial tour is
a chance to change how our communities see arthritis, to change how we live
with arthritis, and talk about what resources and support are critical to
manage our health, wellness, and quality of life," said Cheryl Koehn, founder
and president of Arthritis Consumer Experts, who has lived with arthritis for
almost twenty years. "The tour will challenge people's perception of
arthritis, and answer the question, where is arthritis? The answer is -
arthritis is all around you."
    The Where is Arthritis? tour will be conducting free public arthritis
workshops and diagnostic screenings in eight communities throughout BC,
bringing resources, support, and information for people living with arthritis.
In September, the tour will visit Vancouver, Prince George, Vernon, Kelowna,
Kamloops, Abbotsford, Surrey, Saanich and Victoria.
    "The Where is Arthritis Tour will help raise awareness across the
province of this debilitating disease that affects patients young and old in
B.C.," said Mary McNeil, Minister of State for the Olympics and ActNow BC. "By
getting screened for arthritis at an early age and leading a healthy lifestyle
that includes healthy eating, physical activity and not smoking, we can reduce
the risk of arthritis and other chronic diseases while improving our quality
of life."
    The Arthritis Society is supporting the tour as it visits communities in
BC. "Arthritis is a vastly misunderstood disease," states Marg Vandenberg,
Executive Director of The Arthritis Society, BC & Yukon Division. "People are
unaware that arthritis can strike someone at any age, and it is among the top
three chronic diseases in Canada. The Arthritis Society works to ensure that
British Columbians with arthritis have access to timely diagnosis, education,
and appropriate care, and this tour will play an important role in supporting
those efforts."

    About Where is Arthritis?

    During the month of September, the Where is Arthritis? tour is stopping
in communities throughout BC to conduct special events, arthritis workshops
and screenings to inform, educate and support British Columbians living with
or affected by arthritis. The Where is Arthritis? microsite is a one-stop-shop
of resources, information, and stories about arthritis, and details about the
tour coming to your community. Visit us at www.whereisarthritis.org.
    Do you know where arthritis is? See the Where is Arthritis? tour video
online at http://www.whereisarthritis.org/watch_the_video.cfm.

    Arthritis Consumer Experts

    Arthritis Consumer Experts (ACE) provides free education and information
programs to people with arthritis and is committed to informing, educating and
empowering people with arthritis to help them take control of their disease
and improve their quality of life. ACE's JointHealth(TM) program provides
evidence-based information in reader-friendly language to people with
arthritis, the public, governments and media. www.jointhealth.org

    The Arthritis Society of BC & Yukon

    The Arthritis Society is Canada's principle health charity which empowers
the nearly 4.5 million Canadians with arthritis to live their lives to the
fullest by combating the daily limitations of arthritis. In the last 60 years,
The Society has invested $165 million towards arthritis research to develop
better treatments and ultimately find a cure. In British Columbia & Yukon, the
Society provides education, support, and services to the more than 600,000
people who are currently battling arthritis. www.arthritis.ca

For further information:

For further information: Media contacts: Tara Knight, For Arthritis
Consumer Experts, Cell: (604) 726-0958, (604) 692-4229,
tara.knight@hillandknowlton.ca; Marg Vandenberg or Quincey Kirschner, The
Arthritis Society of BC & Yukon, (778) 389-9746, QKirschner@bc.arthritis.ca;
Jeff Rud, Ministry of Healthy Living and Sport, (250) 952-2387,

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