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An autoimmune disease is a disease in which the body's immune system attacks its own healthy tissues causing illness. Lupus and some forms of arthritis are autoimmune diseases.


Arthritis includes more than 100 diseases and conditions that affect joints, tissues surrounding the joint, and connective tissue. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are two common types of arthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis is joint inflammation caused by the body's immune system attacking its own joints. Osteoarthritis is joint inflammation caused by mechanical wear and tear on the joints. CDC-recommended physical activity programs, such as Walk With Ease, can improve quality of life for people with both of these forms of arthritis.


Lupus is a complex, chronic, inflammatory, autoimmune disease in which an unknown trigger causes the immune system to attack a person’s own tissues, which can lead to severe kidney disease, stroke, and premature cardiovascular disease.


How You Can Join in the NACDD Lupus Effort

Read the National Public Health Agenda for Lupus 2015 to become familiar with lupus and the public health actions State Health Departments can take to improve the care and quality of life for people living with this disease.

How You Can Join in the NACDD Arthritis Effort

Join the Arthritis Council General Member calls to stay up-to-date on projects and opportunities. General Member calls are held on the first Tuesday of each month at 2:00 p.m. ET.

NACDD Action on Arthritis

NACDD’s Advancing Arthritis Public Health Approaches Project works with the CDC Arthritis Program and national partners to expand dissemination, delivery of, and access to arthritis-appropriate, evidence-based interventions (AAEBIs). The project also provides assistance to state arthritis programs to expand state-based efforts. Strategies include: working with partners to disseminate arthritis-appropriate, evidence-based interventions at low or no cost to employees at worksites, and working with American Physical Therapy Association chapters and physical therapy clinics to disseminate the Walk With Ease program.

NACDD Action on Lupus

NACDD and the Lupus Foundation of America, with funding from CDC, developed the first-ever National Public Health Agenda for Lupus 2015 -- A Blueprint for Action to prioritize a coordinated and multifaceted public health approach to lupus. The American College of Rheumatology, funded by CDC, collaborates with NACDD to develop sustainable strategies to support and build partnerships between State Health Departments and community-based organizations on lupus. Two community-based organizations were funded to implement select recommendations from state-based strategic plans.

The Big Bend Rural Health Network has developed an effective partnership with the Florida Chronic Disease Director that includes a lupus subcommittee to the Chronic Disease Coalition, a lupus module in the 2019 BRFSS, and a compilation of hospital discharge and death data for addition to the Florida Charts website. Lupus Foundation of America/Georgia Chapter also has built an effective partnership with the Georgia Chronic Disease Director that includes a lupus module in the 2019 BRFSS and a pilot telemedicine project that evaluated practitioner and patient attitudes about the use of telemedicine for a lupus consultation.

Both subcontractors have participated in a workgroup comprised of the ACR/The Lupus Initiative, NACDD, and pediatric rheumatology fellows in a School Nurse Lupus Education and Training Program (Program) for school nurses. The Program includes a PowerPoint training on the signs and symptoms of lupus, how to implement a Lupus Care Plan for students with lupus and a Child to Adult Transition Care Plan. These documents may be found here.

The University of Alabama, Department of Community Medicine and Population Health/ Institute for Rural Health Research also have joined the program. We will be collecting data on the training experience as well as the intent of school nurses to implement the Care and Transition Plans.

National Association of Chronic Disease Directors
325 Swanton Way
Decatur, GA 30030
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