This year, the Spondylitis Association of America (SAA) has decided to move Spondyloarthritis (SpA) Awareness Month from April to May. SpA Awareness Month was originally spearheaded in 2009 by Michael Smith, an SAA lifetime member and creator of the Spondyville website.

The SAA believes the change from April to May is necessary and important. World Ankylosing Spondylitis (AS) Day occurs in May as well, traditionally on the first Saturday unless the first Saturday is May 1. The SAA believes that moving SpA Awareness Month to May will help unify the awareness month and awareness day.

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In addition, SAA is a member of a global partnership of organizations that aid communities that are affected by spondyloarthritis and those organizations concentrate their initiatives and campaigns around World AS Day and the month of May.

“By aligning our efforts with the rest of these international organizations, we will be better able to raise awareness of the disease that continues to be misunderstand and not well known,” the SAA stated.

The Association also noted that while the awareness month is changing, they remain committed to educating the public and health professionals on spondyloarthritis symptoms to expedite the diagnosis process, advocate for funding to find a cure, and support programs for patients.

Reference

May is Spondyloarthritis (SpA) Awareness Month. Why the change? Van Nuys, CA: Spondylitis Association of America. https://www.spondylitis.org/SpA-Awareness-Month