Arthritis Care

A support service for people with arthritis in Berkshire West

Who are we? Arthritis Care exists to support all people with arthritis. We are a national charity working with and for all people who have arthritis. Our vision is a world where people with arthritis can lead full and active lives.

We have over 150 branches and groups across the UK. We offer a wealth of useful information: booklets and factsheets, self-management support services and our trained Helpline team provide emotional and practical support.

Who can take part? Arthritis Care is working closely with GPs across Berkshire West NHS to offer three ‘Living Well with Arthritis’ services to improve the physical and emotional wellbeing of patients with arthritis through supported self-management.

To be eligible for this service you must be a registered patient at a GP practice within one of the four qualifying Berkshire West areas – these are North West Reading, South Reading, Wokingham and Newbury & District. You must be referred to our service by your GP.

What is available in West Berkshire? Our services are delivered by trained Arthritis Champion Volunteers with personal experience of arthritis – supported by our trained and experienced staff. We offer three ‘Living Well with Arthritis’ services 
Everyday Changes: A face to face individual meeting with our Arthritis Champion volunteers to explore your arthritis: we will provide you with up to date information to help you make decisions for better management of your arthritis. You will be invited to come along to one of our pre-arranged sessions at a local venue. If relevant, you will also be able to access support in completing the Right Care Shared Decision Making aid.

Managing Your Pain: Two half day workshops: these will be in small groups designed to help you learn more about pain and how to manage it better. Our Arthritis 
Champion Volunteers will explore a range of techniques tohelp you manage the pain of your arthritis.

Individual Support Call: A one to one telephone service offering two 1 hour calls: this will be over a three to four week period. Our Arthritis Champion Volunteers will help you explore the impact of your arthritis and changes you could make to better manage on a day to day basis. At the end of the final call you will be asked to 
reflect on the changes you have tried and how effective they have been.

Our services aim to help you to:
• Understand your condition better
• Feel more confident to manage your arthritis including symptoms such as pain
• Have access to the information, support and services you need to make informed 
• Have the necessary information to make positive lifestyle changes such as reviewing 
• Communicate effectively about your arthritis and how it affects you

“Very Positive and informative, given me lots of incentives”
“Picked up many valid points on exercise and healthy eating”
“Extremely helpful, especially options other than surgery which are available”

What happens next?
Once we receive your GP’s referral we will contact you within two weeks. 
This will be by telephone, e-mail or letter.

We will talk through the ‘Living Well with Arthritis’ services available, including locations and dates. Once you have decided what is right for you we will register you onto that service. You will then receive a confirmation letter and information pack. Once you have received your services from us, we let your GP know.

How to contact us?
Accessing these services is through your GP, but if you need to contact us:
Telephone: 0330 2020 358
(This is an answerphone but please leave a message and we will call back).