Mediterr J Rheumatol 2017;28(2):94-8
Rheumatology: Necessary adjustments to the realities of the new era in Greece
Authors Information
Rheumatologist, ex-President of the “Greek Rheumatology Society and Professional Association of Rheumatologists”, Athens, Greece

Rheumatic Diseases (RDs) are a serious, though often not sufficiently recognized, problem; strongly impacting not only patients’ socio-economic activity but their quality of life in general.

Yet, despite the tremendous progress made over the past few years, several questions, in regard to better management of people with rheumatic conditions, remain unanswered.

Furthermore, many institutional problems and fixations in doctors’ and patients’ culture pose additional obstacles to the best treatment of these diseases. In Greece specifically, there are numerous and serious structural problems in the system of providing health services to people with rheumatic diseases; as well as in the education, professional training and development of Rheumatologists, which have been aggravated even more by the prolonged economic crisis.

The scientific rheumatological community, and particularly its institutional representatives, need to implement a long-term plan for the correct and documented application of modern methods for the diagnosis, treatment and support of people with rheumatic diseases. They also need to lead the effort for the creation of a culture of cooperation between the parties concerned; namely the various professional groups of rheumatologists, other health professionals, patient associations and the state.