IFPA welcomes efforts of Argentina, Ecuador, Panama and Qatar and 20 other WHO Member States to establish World Psoriasis Day as a WHO health day
At the occasion of the 66th World Health Assembly Argentina, Ecuador, Panama and Qatar initiated a resolution encouraging the establishment of World Psoriasis Day as a WHO health day to raise awareness about this hugely underestimated disease.
(Geneva, 28 May, 2013 )
Psoriasis is a serious, chronic, inflammatory, non-communicable disease for which there is currently no cure. According to a recent report the disease affects around 2 percent of the global population, with an even higher prevalence in some countries. In the run-up to the 133rd Executive Board meeting on 29 and 30 May, over 20 WHO member states have expressed their support for greater awareness for psoriasis.
The burden of psoriasis is very often underestimated, yet its sufferers, apart from experiencing painful and itching skin lesions, are also at increased risk of developing severe co-morbid conditions such as diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular diseases and psoriatic arthritis. Moreover, psoriasis is often linked to stigma and discrimination, both social and work-related, as well as depression and even suicidal ideation.
H.E. Mr Alberto Navarro-Brin, Permanent Representative of Panama adds: “Together with Argentina, Ecuador and Qatar, we initiated a resolution for consideration by the WHO Executive Board to establish an official World Psoriasis Day. Stigmatization and discrimination of people with psoriasis is a major issue, for this reason we need a global awareness campaign about the diagnosis, treatment and care available for psoriasis. Psoriasis is not contagious and psoriasis has no borders; it requires action at global, regional and national level.”
On the 27th of May a special side event on psoriasis brought together leading experts and patient representatives to inform the delegates of the Sixty-sixth World Health Assembly about the impact this complex disease has on both the individual and the society. The event was organized in partnership with the International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA) - the global umbrella organization for psoriasis associations. Psoriasis awareness links to a number of this year’s World Health Assembly agenda points, including the WHO Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of NCDs 2013-2020 and Mental Health Action plan. More generally, it relates to UN discussions on disability and human rights.
“We want to make sure that the World Health Assembly delegates are aware of this disabling and serious non-communicable disease, which will hopefully also help them to take the decision to support the resolution and to act on both a national and global level” – adds Lars Ettarp, the President of IFPA.
Barbra Bohannan, IFPA Director of Communications, tel. +46 700 929 614, firstname.lastname@example.org
The International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA)
The International Federation of Psoriasis Associations (IFPA) is the non-profit umbrella organization for the majority of psoriasis associations from around the world. Today IFPA has over 50 member associations covering all regions of the world. IFPA unites psoriasis associations so that their global campaign for improved medical care, greater public understanding and increased research will improve the lives of the more than 125 million people who live with psoriasis and/or psoriatic arthritis. IFPA is actively campaigning for recognition of psoriasis as a serious, noncommunicable disease by the World Health Organization’s member states.
World Psoriasis Day, October 29, was initiated in 2004 by patients, for patients, to give people with psoriasis a global platform for awareness, information and education. Please visit the official World Psoriasis Day website for more information, www.worldpsoriasisday.com.
You can read more about IFPA, our members and our activities on our website www.ifpa-pso.org.