'How better communication with my doctor improved my life with an RMD'

The Edgar Stene Prize Essay competition is now closed. Thank you to all those who submitted entries. 

Congratulations to Shauna O'Connor who was the overall winner of the Edgar Stene Prize in 2023. 

Read her inspiring story here.

The EULAR Edgar Stene Prize essay competition is an international writing competition with the aim to increase awareness of rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases.

The prize is awarded every year to the best essay contribution submitted by a person with arthritis or other rheumatic or musculoskeletal disorder (RMD) describing their individual experience of living with an RMD. You are invited to consider the following questions and issues in your essay:

  • What is your experience of communication with your doctor? Why is good communication important to you? 
  • How important is it for you to speak openly with your doctor about any relevant issues?
  • Do you feel understood and taken seriously by your doctor? Is there enough time given to your consultations? How is good communication achieved? 
  • What role does the patient play in effective communication? Have you any tips to share for other patients? 
  • Use this opportunity to express your expectations, hopes and even visions as to how communication with doctors could be improved in the future. 

Participants are requested to submit their entries to Arthritis Ireland by 30 November 2022 (further details are below). The Irish winner will be announced on 16 December and that entry proceeds to the European competition. The overall winners will be selected by the 2022 Edgar Stene Prize Jury, to be announced by 15 March 2023, then awarded at the opening plenary session taking place at the EULAR European Congress of Rheumatology on 31st May.

The competition has a first prize money of €1,000, including a travel bursary (to attend the opening plenary session) and an invitation to the EULAR Congress dinner*. Second and third prizes are awarded with prize money of €700 and €300 respectively.

Read the 2022 winning entry by Nora Sofia Dubilier

Submission guidelines

  1. Essays may be submitted by any person (over 18) living with a rheumatic disease. Entries are to be submitted to Arthritis Ireland by email to [email protected] on or before 30 November 2022. 
  2. Essays should not exceed 2 pages (typewritten, Arial 12-point, single line space). All entries must be submitted in Microsoft Word (.doc/.docx format). PDF files will not be accepted.
  3. Essays must be:
    • original and unpublished. Plagiarised entries will be rejected.
    • written by one person. Co-authored essays are not accepted.
  4. Copyright of the essays entered will be assigned to the organiser.

Please include the following with your submission: 

  • Email address and contact number 
  • Portrait picture in high resolution 
  • 2-3 short paragraphs about yourself including age, profession, family, hometown, hobbies, how you learned about the Edgar Stene Prize, why you chose to enter the competition
  • Signed copy of EULAR's official publication consent form

Value and awarding of the prizes

  • 1st prize: The competition has a first prize money of €1,000, including a travel bursary (to attend the opening plenary session) and an invitation to the EULAR Congress dinner*.
  • 2nd and 3rd prizes: Second and third prizes are awarded with prize money of €700 and €300 respectively.

* Should the EULAR Congress 2023 be still impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic or be held as a virtual event for any other reason, all Congress destination-related activities to come with the Stene Prize (travel to the EULAR Congress 2022, accommodation, participation in the on-site Congress and the opening plenary session, EULAR Congress networking dinners) will be cancelled. There is no right to receive any of these related activities as monetary refund nor will they be moved to a later point in time.

Please note: the Stene Prize money will still be awarded and not be impacted.

Composition of the EULAR jury

The EULAR jury shall comprise five voting members, of whom not more than two shall be doctors, appointed by the EULAR Standing Committee of PARE. The EULAR Vice-President representing national PARE organisations and the Chair of the Standing Committee of PARE shall be ex-officio members of the jury. The ex-officio members have no voting rights. A jury shall be appointed for each prize and no member may sit more than twice in succession.

The Stene Prize shall be awarded by an absolute majority decision. If no entry is judged worthy of the prize then it shall not be awarded. The winning contribution and the other entries may be published after the presentation of the prize in whatever form the author, the national organisation or EULAR may decide.

No legal or other objection to the majority decision of the jury is possible. Any discussions or correspondence concerning the decision are excluded.