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National Arthritis Month -- May 1999

May is National Arthritis Month. Arthritis and other rheumatic conditions are among the most common chronic conditions and constitute the leading cause of disability, affecting an estimated 42.7 million persons in the United States. The prevalence of arthritis is expected to increase to 60 million by 2020 (1). On May 18, the Arthritis Foundation is sponsoring Arthritis Action Day to draw national attention to this public health problem. In addition, the Arthritis Foundation is working with CDC and other organizations to implement the National Arthritis Action Plan: A Public Health Strategy (NAAP) (2) and to promote progress toward proposed arthritis health objectives for 2010 (3).

Additional information about arthritis, National Arthritis Month, Arthritis Action Day, NAAP, and ongoing local Arthritis Foundation programs and services is available from the Arthritis Foundation, telephone (800) 283-7800, or on the World-Wide Web,*


  1. CDC. Arthritis prevalence and activity limitations--United States, 1990. MMWR 1994;43:433-8.
  2. CDC. National Arthritis Action Plan: a public health strategy. Atlanta, Georgia: Arthritis Foundation, Association of State and Territorial Health Officials, and CDC, 1999.
  3. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. Healthy people 2010 objectives: draft for public comment. Washington, DC: US Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, 1998.

* References to sites of nonfederal organizations on the World-Wide Web are provided as a service to MMWR readers and do not constitute or imply endorsement of these organizations or their programs by CDC or the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. CDC is not responsible for the content of pages found at these sites.

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