April 11, 1983

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Arthritis, the oldest known group of chronic diseases, is still the Nation's greatest crippler. At least 35 million Americans -- about one in seven -- have some form of arthritis.

The total cost of arthritis must be counted not only in terms of socioeconomic losses, but also in terms of human suffering and disability. Uncontrolled arthritis has major negative social, psychological, and economic impacts not only on the patients who suffer from arthritis, but also on their families and on our society in general.

We have learned a great deal through research, but as yet these disorders are not fully understood and are not adequately controllable. We must meet the critical need for new research ideas and productive research studies upon which advances in the area of arthritis treatment and prevention can be based. Our goal continues to be the eventual elimination of arthritis as a cause of human suffering and economic burden to our Nation.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, in accordance with Senate Joint Resolution 32, do hereby proclaim the month of May 1983 as National Arthritis Month. I urge the people of the United States and educational, philanthropic, scientific, medical and health care organizations, and professionals to support appropriate efforts to discover the causes and cures of all forms of arthritis and to alleviate the suffering of victims of these disorders.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this eleventh day of April, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred eighty-three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventh.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 10:30 a.m., April 12, 1983]