Background One of the main priorities that Bulgarian organization for people with rheumatic diseases follows is dissemination of knowledge and information about RMD'S and their impact on people's life and to the society.
The WAD awareness campaign is the culmination of the organization's activities during the whole year.
Objectives The main goal of the 2016 WAD awareness campaign was to:
Inform the society and BOPRD's members about the social importance of RMD's.
To inform BOPRD's members what are their rights as people with long term chronic condition.
To inform the society about RMD's and the challenges that people with RMD's face.
To challenge the people with RMD's to look into their inner world and to define what are their strengths and weaknesses.
To make the informing process more attractive, by visualizing the key features of life with an RMD.
Methods In 2016 BOPRD organized an awareness campaign - “We do the impossible, because the possible everyone can do”
The start of our campaign was on 1st of October and lasted for more than two weeks till the World arthritis day and ended on 16th of October. Informative and motivating pictures, with information about different RMD's, were published every day on the official BOPRD's Facebook page and were shared in the closed group for people with rheumatic diseases as well.
A social experiment among the members of the organization was made. They were asked to explain what the disease means to them, like they are telling the story to a person who do not know anything about it.
The aim of this experiment was to identify the meaning and significance which people with rheumatic diseases give to their condition, as well as the basic problems result from the illness.
Based on the social experiment and analysis of 33 small biographical narratives 17 basic characteristics of the rheumatic diseases are identified. These characteristics form the problematic areas for people with RMD's and bases for their study. The main characteristics are life with chronic pain, the process of disabling, life in continuous compliance with the environment and the high degree of uncertainty and ambiguity, imposed by chronic illness.
An e-booklet, containing the results of the social experiment was published on BOPRD's Facebook page and website on 12th October. On the same day we published the WAD video, of the PARE WAD campaign: “The future is in your hands”.
At the end of the awareness campaign we published an online booklet, which contained translated articles about RMD's and the different aspects of life with a chronic condition.
The total number of all publications is 22.
The publications were seen from over 3 000 people.
The WAD video was seen by 1000 people.
The results of the social experiment were seen by 1500 people.
The most popular were those pictures that managed to touch people's feelings.
Conclusions Main common characteristics of rheumatic diseases were identified and can help patients in getting the right diagnosis.
The most popular were the posts that were related to emotions and experience of life with a chronic condition.
By publishing the results of the social experiment we managed to help those who read the narratives get the feeling that they are not alone.
The results of the social experiment will be used as a basis in developing a manual for the main symptoms of RMD's (the patient perspective)
Acknowledgements Miglena Ivanova
Disclosure of Interest None declared