4th March 2021
New results from the European ‘REUMAVID’ study have revealed the increased pressure put on Britain’s healthcare systems as a result of COVID-19.
38.4% of respondents in the UK reported that their state of health had worsened since the beginning of the pandemic, while 43.6% were at risk of anxiety, and 33.6% of depression. In addition, many reported increased smoking and alcohol consumption, along with weight gain.
The online survey comprised of 1,800 patients from seven European countries, including over 550 patients from the UK. More than half of the people surveyed were forced to cancel their routine rheumatology appointment, and of these, one third were not given an alternative date.
The REUMAVID study was performed in collaboration with 14 patient organisations across Europe, including Arthritis Action, NASS and NRAS. The research aims to raise awareness of the health and wellbeing consequences of early pandemic management of rheumatic diseases, and help to support future management as the pandemic develops. The results show that the impact of the pandemic can not only be measured by the number of COVID-19 cases, but also by the number of people whose healthcare is neglected due to stretched resources.
The second phase of the REUMAVID study, which aims to further understand the effects of the pandemic on rheumatic diseases, is currently ongoing. If you live with a rheumatic condition such as rheumatoid arthritis and would like to take part in the survey, please complete this questionnaire.
REUMAVID is a study aiming to assess the health impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown on the health of people with rheumatic diseases in Europe. It is an international collaboration led by the Health & Territory Research (HTR) of the Universidad the Sevilla in collaboration with 14 patient organizations across Europe, including Arthritis Action, NASS and NRAS, with the support of Novartis. So far, 1,800 people from seven European countries (Cyprus, Greece, France, Italy, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom) have participated in the first phase of the project.
Further research and challenges will be met as the pandemic develops, in order to; make the voice of people with rheumatic diseases be heard; raise awareness on their situation; and support health policy during the ongoing crisis.