Left Side

Caucus Co-Chairs

Mary I. O'Connor, MD
Professor of Orthopaedics
Associate Medical Director, Development, Mayo Clinic in Florida
Medical Director, Integrity and Compliance Office, Mayo Clinic
Thomas A. Mason, MD
Co-Medical Director, Project Brotherhood
Medical Director, Woodlawn Health Center


Movement is Life Newsletter

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…to the website of the Movement is Life Caucus. We are a diverse group of individuals and organizations focused on improving the health of the nation as a whole by helping eradicate disparate healthcare for certain communities.

Issue Overview

The onset of joint pain may represent the early stages of osteoarthritis (the most common form of arthritis). Overweight and obesity increases the risk and progression of osteoarthritis because the extra load directly affects weight-bearing joints (e.g. the knees and hips). Studies have shown that knee osteoarthritis is 4 to 5 times more common in overweight people compared with people who are of normal body weight. [Johns Hopkins Arthritis Center – http.//www.hopkins-arthritis.org/patient-corner/disease-management/osteoandweight.html], and overweight individuals in their thirties who did not have knee OA were at greater risk of later developing the disease [Felson DT, Anderson JJ, Naimark A. Walker AM, Meenan RF. “Obesity and knee osteoarthritis: The Framingham study.” Ann. Int. Med 1988; 109: 18-24]

Women, African Americans and Latinos/Hispanics face more severe osteoarthritis, functional limitation and disability but have less than optimal access to diagnostic, medical and surgical intervention, irrespective of their insurance coverage. These same individuals have the highest levels of obesity in the nation [The Surgeon General’s Vision for a Fit and Healthy Nation 2010 – U.S. Department of Health and Human Services], coupled with the highest level of physical inactivity [“Physical Activity Among Adults, United States 2003” – Adnance Data from Vital and Health Statistics, Number 333 – May 14, 2003]

Consequence of Non-Action

Our Mission

Decrease musculoskeletal health disparities among women and racial/ethnic minorities by raising awareness of their impact on chronic disease management and quality of life. By promoting the importance of early intervention, we seek to slow musculoskeletal disease progression, reduce disability and encourage physical activity and daily movement to improve the overall health of the nation.

Our Goal

Be a catalyst for change by energizing multi-disciplinary work groups to develop measurable, short-term action plans that “move the needle” on critical factors that drive musculoskeletal disparities. We must find ways to make an impact now, while long-term solutions are being developed.

Strategic Objectives

  • Reduce Musculoskeletal Health Disparities at the Healthcare Provider Level
  • Reduce Musculoskeletal Health Disparities at the Community Level
  • Reduce Musculoskeletal Health Disparities at the Patient Level
  • Reduce Musculoskeletal Health Disparities at the Policy Level

Impact of Individual Choice on Health Status

Osteoarthritis and obesity are progressive chronic conditions that may worsen or improve over time depending on when and how an individual decides to act.

How can we “crack the code” among communities disproportionately affected by obesity and osteoarthritis and catalyze a downward trajectory in the burden and impact of both health conditions?

Right Side

There is no registration fee to attend this meeting. Limited financial assistance may be provided for non-healthcare providers only. Click here for more information.

Partial List of Participating Organizations

  • American Association of Latino Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons
  • American Diabetes Association
  • American Physical Therapy Association
  • American Psychological Association
  • Arthritis Foundation
  • Association of Black Cardiologists
  • Association of Minority Health Professions Schools, Inc.
  • Conference of National Black Churches
  • J. Robert Gladden Orthopaedic Society
  • National Association of Orthopaedic Nurses
  • National Black Nurses Association
  • National Hispanic Council on Aging
  • National Hispanic Medical Association
  • Nth Dimensions Education Solutions
  • Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society
  • To Our Children's Future with Health
  • United States Bone and Joint Initiative
  • W. Montague Cobb/NMA Health Institute