BATON ROUGE, La. – Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is observing May as Arthritis Awareness Month to highlight the fact that more than 950,000 Louisiana adults and 5,000 children struggle with arthritis. The disease, which can strike at any age, affects more than 54million American adults and 300,000 children.
Arthritis is one of the most widespread health conditions in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It is the nation’s leading cause of disability. Arthritis is not a single disease but a family of more than 100 types of diseases that cause pain, aching, stiffness and swelling of the joints.The three most common forms of arthritis are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia.
The CDC, Arthritis Foundation and other partners observe Arthritis Awareness Month each year to recognize the serious impact of arthritis on Americans’ health. One out of four American adults are affected by some form of arthritis.
Almost 300,000 children nationwide have juvenile arthritis, which can attack a child’s eyes, skin and lungs, sometimes causing rashes, low fevers and severe pain. The effectiveness of existing treatments for both children and adults can vary by patient, but they are improving as researchers continue to study arthritis prevention, treatment and possible cures.
Arthritis patient and Blue Cross employee Robin Mayhall was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at age 21. “Right now there’s no cure for rheumatoid arthritis,” she says. “But I am always hopeful for the future.”
In this video, Robin talks about the disease and what it’s been like for her to live with it for 28 years.
If you have been diagnosed with arthritis, Blue Cross’ care team is here to support you on the journey to optimal health. You may be able to work with a health coach who can give you personalized information, guidance and encouragement. There is no cost to work with a Blue Cross health coach. Visit www.bcbsla.com/Stronger to learn more about available programs and services, or how to sign up for health coaching.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is committed to our mission to improve the health and lives of Louisianians. We invest both time and money in the communities we serve, supporting the health and wellbeing of Louisianians through more than 200 charitable organizations.
With our subsidiaries, HMO Louisiana and Southern National Life, we provide group and individual health insurance plans, life and disability insurance, group voluntary products and administrative services to one out of four Louisiana residents. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana also provides Medicare supplement and Medicare Advantage plans and is a partner in offering the Healthy Blue Medicaid Managed care plan. Louisiana is the only state where we operate, with offices in every major region to serve our customers.
Founded in New Orleans in 1934, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is a tax-paying non-profit health insurer. We are a private mutual company, owned by our policyholders, with an independent Louisiana Board of Directors and no shareholders. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.
To learn more, visit our website at www.bcbsla.com.