Our research strategy 2022 - 2026

Millions of people with arthritis around the UK are not getting the treatment, support and care they deserve. Arthritis isn’t “just aches and pains” and it isn’t inevitable.

Research can – and has – changed lives. Providing treatments that work, pain management and hope for things to be better than now, research helps people with arthritis to live a fuller life.

We want research to make arthritis preventable, manageable, and treatable. Research needs to be making a bigger difference to people’s lives, quicker. So people don’t live with the pain, fatigue and isolation of arthritis.

Our research investment and influencing is focused on accelerating the pace and precision of musculoskeletal research.

By that we mean:

  • A better understanding of arthritis – its causes and why certain people are more affected.
  • More ground-breaking discoveries, breakthroughs in the lab, clinic and community turning into better treatments and interventions quicker, so people feel the benefits in their day-to-day life, sooner.
  • The experiences of people with arthritis informing research, so it’s focused on the areas where it can have the biggest impact.

To support the development of our new research strategy, we produced a report which provides a snapshot of the value of MSK research and the gaps that need to be addressed in the UK.

Better lives today, better lives tomorrow

“We began with what seemed like an impossible task, but everyone had the same vision – to ensure the future of research was done with, and for, those with musculoskeletal conditions. People with musculoskeletal conditions are at the centre of every pathway ensuring that research has meaning and impact on many lives.” - Debra Dulake, research volunteer and strategy development group member

Our research strategy is a roadmap for delivering this change in musculoskeletal research.

It focuses on four areas we ultimately want to achieve change in with and for people with arthritis.

To find out more, read our research strategy.

Read our research strategy in Welsh.

  1. Early detection and prevention: Spotting the signs early and reducing the impact of arthritis
  2. Targeted treatment: More effective drug and non-drug treatments
  3. Living well: More people living well with their condition, feeling supported in their day to day life
  4. People and partnerships: Making life better for people with arthritis becomes a priority for researchers, funders and investors

Our advisory groups will help inform our activities in our priority areas and find ways to keep listening to diverse groups of people. Read about gaps and opportunities for arthritis research (Word, 342.6 KB).

Following the publication of our research strategy, we have had a number of questions from our research community, you can read our responses to the most frequently asked here (Word, 56 KB).