Lupus Initiative to Increase Awareness and Understanding

May 29, 2010

An educational initiative aimed at eliminating ethnic and racial disparities in the diagnosis and management of lupus was launched recently by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) in conjunction with the US Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health, Office on Women’s Health, and Office of the Surgeon General.

An educational initiative aimed at eliminating ethnic and racial disparities in the diagnosis and management of lupus was launched recently by the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) in conjunction with the US Department of Health and Human Services' Office of Minority Health, Office on Women’s Health, and Office of the Surgeon General. The program, Eliminating Health Disparities in Lupus (EHDL), is designed to increase lupus awareness and help women, especially minorities, achieve early diagnosis and thus increase their chances for improved health and long-term survival. It also involves new efforts in informing health professionals in practice or in training about this serious national health problem.

An international group of lupus experts, educators, and medical professionals will work to enhance lupus curricula at medical, nursing, and health professional schools and better prepare the workforce to identify lupus in populations disproportionately affected by the disease. The ACR will develop and distribute tools to support the recognition of lupus and the impact of health disparities. These tools will be designed to increase the number of educational interventions from health care professionals for patients at risk for lupus. In addition to traditional methods of educational outreach, the initiative will use the most current communication vehicles (eg, patient/provider Web sites, social media outlets, podcasts, and webinars) to disseminate information about lupus.

For more information about the EHDL program, contact Lisa Amaker at lamaker@rheumatology.org. Or, visit the ACR Web site at http://www.rheumatology.org or contact the organization at American College of Rheumatology, 2200 Lake Boulevard NE, Atlanta, GA 30319; telephone: (404) 633-3777; fax: (404) 633-1870.

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