19 January 2022: Arthritis Ireland will deliver ten free online self-management courses starting in February to support people with arthritis during Covid-19.

The Living Well with Arthritis course gives people with arthritis the tools and techniques to help them better manage their condition. This includes managing pain and fatigue and developing a healthy lifestyle.

The award-winning course, which is usually delivered in person in a community setting, will be delivered online via Zoom. The first course starts on Monday 7 February.

Grainne OLearyGráinne O’Leary, Arthritis Ireland chief executive, said: “Covid-19 has highlighted that the skills and knowledge of self-management are more important now than ever. The Living Well with Arthritis course gives people the tools to be able to better manage their arthritis and to live happier, healthier lives, which is so vital during these challenging times.”

She added that: “People are really enjoying the online delivery of the Living Well course. It’s a way of connecting with others who understand what it’s like to be living with a chronic condition. The fact that it’s online has removed the barrier of distance and you can do the course from any place in the country. People of all ages are becoming increasingly familiar with the technology and we put in a lot of effort to ensure that it works smoothly for everyone.”

According to course leader, Rachel Dungan, “You can now participate in the course from the comfort and safety of your home. Like the in-person workshop, the online course features a lot of groupwork and interaction between the participants. It is a very rewarding experience.

“Since no cure exists, learning to live well with arthritis is crucial to ensuring you have a good quality of life,” Ms Dungan stated.

On the course, participants learn about pain and fatigue management; healthy lifestyle and the importance of healthy eating; dealing with negative emotions; and exercise techniques for weak and damaged joints.

Developed by Stanford University, over 700 people completed an Arthritis Ireland online self-management course in 2021.

To register for a place on one of 10 free self-management courses, visit www.arthritisireland.ie.