Background People with arthritis often do not receive optimum care and support due to difficulties in navigating the health care system in Germany. In Germany one of the main difficulties of the health system is a lack of cooperation between different health care providers.
Objectives Deutsche Rheuma-Liga wants to provide information and advice for people with different levels of health literacy and different needs, offering a broad range of contact forms and different media.
Methods Deutsche Rheuma-Liga provides information personally, on telephone helplines and on the internet. Information is provided by peers and specialized professional advice is offered regarding specific issues (legal, medical). For three years a project has been carried out on the national level providing an additional guiding service (Rheuma-Lotse) in two regional offices and a specialised guiding service for people with rare forms of arthritis. We offer written information in a wide range of print materials, in the internet, in social media and internet forums. Information is tailored to different age groups and to different levels of health literacy. A new line of leaflets provides information for people who are not able to read difficult and long texts.
Results A member/nonmember survey showed that the members view Deutsche Rheuma-Liga as the second most important provider of information. Only the GP is considered even more important. However, Deutsche Rheuma-Liga has not yet reached a similar result with non-members.
Conclusions More effort will be necessary to reach the general public and provide information about the many information and advice services to people who have not yet had contact with Deutsche Rheuma-Liga.
Disclosure of Interest None declared