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Z Rheumatol. 2011 Oct;70(8):641-50. doi: 10.1007/s00393-011-0763-0.

[Strategies for improved healthcare of people with the endemic disease rheumatism exemplified by rheumatoid arthritis].

[Article in German]

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Abteilung für Molekulare Immunologie, Universitätsklinikum Erlangen, Glückstr. 6, 91054, Erlangen, Deutschland.


New therapeutic principles and considerable diagnostic advances have made it possible to define different rheumatic diseases and especially rheumatoid arthritis (RA) at an early stage and by starting an early and aggressive medication a considerable proportion of patients with RA will reach the status of low disease activity or even remission. With the additional development of composite measures to estimate the disease activity of RA, it was the goal of an international working group consisting of rheumatologists and patients to develop recommendations for treating rheumatoid arthritis in a similar way as for patients with hypertension or diabetes, with the aim to achieve remission as often as possible. This treat-to-target initiative has taken off in quite a number of different countries including Germany leading to discussions on how this initiative can be integrated into the specific national healthcare systems and what possibilities would exist for its implementation. To develop strategies for an improved healthcare of people suffering from rheumatic diseases and using RA as an example, action elements and postulates were developed which will be discussed in more detail in the present manuscript.

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