Four Ways to Support Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month

While rheumatic diseases are nothing to celebrate, dedicating a whole month to the cause helps raise awareness, influences public policy, and makes people with these diseases and their caregivers aware of the vast support network available to them. These are important goals for the rheumatic community, and we encourage all NORM members to get their patients and practices involved. To get things started, we’ve put together four ways you can make this year’s Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month the most successful one yet.

Download the toolkit.

If your practice would like to hold a Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month event or host some sort of activity this year, download the free toolkit, which explains how to get involved. It also contains a quick reminder about the goals of Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month, an overview of the campaign, guidance materials for the media, and new graphics and flyers with Venus Williams as the spokesperson. You can download the free toolkit here.

Get social.

Use the hashtag #RDAM on social media to share how your practice is participating. This is a great way to spread the word about Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month to the medical community and all your other followers, as well as get the movement trending on major social networks.

Watch and promote the PSA.

Venus Williams knows what it’s like to be one of the millions of Americans battling a rheumatic disease. Watch the Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month PSA to learn more about her journey and share it with others.

Share your story.

This year, Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month influencers are inviting people to share their personal stories, and take part in a short survey. One of the best ways for policymakers to understand and care about these issues is to hear how it affects their citizens. It’s easy to take action and stay up to date on important advocacy issues for the rheumatology community. Share your story online, take the quick survey, and use the automated VoterVoice system to send messages to your government representatives. While this part of the campaign is geared toward individuals rather than practices, it’s a wonderful project for your patients to take on. Telling them about this opportunity and encouraging them to take part is a great way to raise awareness.

We hope these ideas help you and your practice celebrate Rheumatic Disease Awareness Month and improve the lives of your patients. If you have any other ideas, please share them on our Facebook page.

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  • As a speaker at the first ad hoc meeting of rheumatology practice managers gathered in a single small room at its infancy a decade ago, I’m amazed to see how NORM has blossomed into a high energy organization of depth and professional meetings with parallel break-out symposia between plenary sessions. NORM has truly come of age. This is where the “business” of rheumatology gets learned. The ”guildmanship” for rheumatology practice management is now strong.- Paul H. Caldron, DO, FACP, FACR, MBA, Arizona Arthritis and Rheumatology Associates
  • In a time of demanding changes in the management of medical practices in the US, NORM has been a lifesaver to the community of Rheumatology practices.  NORM has allowed our practice to stay ahead of the many demands of CMS and others payors and has ensured that our practice remains cognizant of new issues that arise in HIPPA compliance, human resources and medical billing to name a few. Sending our Practice Manager to NORM's conferences has been cost-effective and beneficial to our practice because she returns to our office with an abundance of information that otherwise would have taken months to compile. Every Rheumatology practice that wishes to stay on top of emerging issues in practice management should consider sending a member of their staff to NORM's conference.- Michael S. Rosen M.D., Chester County Rheumatology PC
  • Thanks to all those wonderful people in the NORM Network who respond to emails, offering their advice, experience, time, and support ... I haven't even been a member a full year yet and I am amazed at the dedication of everyone who responds to helping via emails and the NORM Organization itself! I have barely had a chance to explore the resources and I have yet to really dive into requests for help still I am silently learning so much and do occasionally offer what I can! Thank you all!- Cheryl Piambino, Kenneth E. Bresky, DO

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