PAFLAR End of Year 2023 Message

23rd December 2023

Dear All,

On behalf of the PAFLAR Board, I would like to extend our sincere gratitude to all our members and partners who continue to support with dedication PAFLAR’s initiatives and activities during the year 2023. It has been an amazing year of growth as we collaborate to work towards achieving our dream of promoting access to quality care for children in Africa and across the globe with Rheumatic and Musculoskeletal Diseases(RMDs).

Some of our greatest achievements in line with this mission were our pioneer project of Therapeutic Patient Education (TPE) for children with arthritis across different regions in Africa where they were educated on their disease, treatment strategies and complications using play, games and toys appropriate for the child’s age. This project is in line with our aspiration to promote patient centered care for our children with rheumatic diseases. It has been a great illustration of how much we can achieve together with unity of purpose hence our slogan “Stronger Together For A Better Future”.

Our 3rd PAFLAR Hybrid Congress held in Mombasa, Kenya was a celebration of our Pan-African Spirit promoting our core values of inclusivity, innovation, quality and excellence. As PAFLAR’s first hybrid congress, it successfully blended physical and virtual participants, breaking geographical barriers and uniting experts, healthcare professionals, and stakeholders in the field. Under the theme “Paediatric Rheumatology in Africa: Tackling Emerging Challenges”, this event was a resounding success paving the way for future congresses and establishing itself as a cornerstone in advancing paediatric rheumatology in Africa with participants from over 37 countries worldwide. Our conference culminated in the publication of our 3rd congress abstracts

Our ongoing monthly educationalPAFLAR webinars registered over 1,100 participants this year, from 44 countries across the continents. The ongoing PAFLAR-JIR collaboration resulted in clinicians across Africa participating in the educational JIR Winter School and their monthly webinars as speakers and participants. In the spirit of patient-centred care, we had the honor to hold various virtual patient advocacy days and avail patient tailored educational material . We look forward to sharing our first Pan-African data on Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) since we launched our PAFLAR registry . We appreciate you All for your dedication and commitment towards achieving our mission. We are grateful to all our members who have committed to joining our various working groups to achieve the PAFLAR vision and mission.

We look forward to an exhilarating year in 2024 as we optimize our “Power of Voice” to share the African Story of Paediatric Rheumatology while strengthening our networks and partnerships further. We endeavor to uphold our core values of commitment, honesty, inclusivity, accountability, innovation, quality and excellence in all that we do.

As the author James Clear stated in his best selling book Atomic Habits “..We do not rise to the level of our goals but fall to the level of our systems..”  may we purpose to cultivate and establish systems that promote equity in access to optimum clinical care for children with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases across Africa and the entire globe.

We wish you All a Merry Christmas and a Happy Prosperous 2024 full of hope, joy, optimism, good health and prosperity.

Kind regards,

Dr Angela Migowa
President of PAFLAR

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