Learn the differentials to eliminate the disparities by recognizing, diagnosing and treating lupus in a culturally competent manner.
The Lupus Initiative® (TLI), a national program of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), is dedicated to providing tools and resources to healthcare providers, from general practitioners and medical specialists to nurse practitioners and school nurses. TLI’s robust offering includes continuing medical education, patient materials, interactive case studies, videos, presentations, and more. By helping healthcare providers recognize who is most at risk for lupus and make appropriate referrals to rheumatologists, TLI aims to improve health prospects for people with undiagnosed lupus.
Systemic lupus erythematosus, referred to as SLE or lupus, is an inflammatory, multisystem, autoimmune disease. It is of unknown etiology with protean clinical and laboratory manifestations and a variable course and prognosis. It is sometimes called the “great imitator,” because the diversity of clinical symptoms in SLE is great and all organ systems are vulnerable. Lupus can affect many parts of the body including the skin, kidneys, lungs, heart, and brain. The disease is characterized by periods of flare and remission and can culminate in irreversible end-organ damage.
While an early diagnosis improves quality of life and patient outcomes, receiving a lupus diagnosis can be a difficult and timely process. Therefore, it is vital for healthcare providers to know how to recognize, refer, diagnosis, and/or treat clinical manifestations of lupus. With proper diagnosis and treatment, the disease is now more manageable than in years past, allowing people affected by lupus to live full, productive lives.
Take the initiative.
Know the differentials to eliminate the disparities.
Do you know the differentials for how to recognize and diagnosis lupus in a culturally competent manner? Take our complimentary CME/MOC activities to help eliminate health disparities for people living with lupus.
Health disparities are the differences in the incidence, prevalence, mortality, and burden of disease (and other adverse health conditions) that exist among specific populations and demographics. In the case of systemic lupus erythematosus, clinical manifetations indicate a difference in disease prevalence based on race, ethnicity and gender:
- Black women are 3 times more likely to develop lupus than White women.
- Women are 9 times more likely to develop lupus than men.
- Hispanic, Asian, and Native American populations are also more likely to develop lupus and at a younger age.
- Specific racial/ethnic minorities with lupus have mortality rates at least 3 times as high as White individuals.
Studies have found susceptibility genes that are common in multiple racial/ethnic groups and research is ongoing to understand differences in genetic risk factors across populations. However, socioeconomic disparities in lupus incidence and outcomes strongly suggest that factors beyond genetics or innate biology underlie health disparities. Rather, studies suggest biologic mechanisms that contribute to health disparities are influenced by a complex interplay of socioeconomic, cultural, and environmental factors. Considering the complexity of these factors, reducing lupus-related health disparties requires broad and multidisciplinary solutions at the individual, community, healthcare system, and population levels.
For Patients and Supporters
Self-Management Tools & Resources.
Help people affected by lupus better understand and manage the disease with lupus with self-management resources including videos, guides, plans and more.
Continuing Medical Education (CME)
School Nurse Programs
Given the criticality of continued care for persons with lupus, ACR wants to assist school nurses to support students, their families, and the student’s health care team in caring for the student with lupus by providing these useful resources. We are pleased to assist you in meeting your students’ needs by providing you with two plans: Guidance to Caring for Students with Lupus (Care Plan) and Guidance to Independent Self-Care for Students with Lupus (Transition Plan). These plans were designed by ACR, in conjunction with the National Association of Chronic Disease Directors (NACDD) with funding provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The care plans included in this package were designed by experts and tested with school nurses to provide support and care for students living with lupus.