ActiveOA - Active living with osteoArthritis

ActiveOA - Active living with OsteoArthritis

The ActiveA program was initiated in 2015 and is based on the knowledge that only a minority of all patients who receive surgery because of osteoarthritis have seen a physiotherapist at any time before surgery. The aim of ActiveA is to implement international guidelines for the treatment of patients with osteoarthritis of the hip and/or knee in outpatient physiotherapy practice. The guidelines emphasize information, exercise and weight reduction (if necessary) as the main treatment modalities. The target of the ActiveA is that all patients with osteoarthritis of the hip and/or knee should be offered this evidence-based treatment, regardless of where they live.

The Nordic collaboration

The ActiveA program is based on similar programs in Sweden (the BOA registry) and Denmark (GLA;D). The BOA-program was initiated during 2008 and is already implemented in most parts of Sweden. More than 1200 physiotherapists and occupational therapists have attended the program, including a total of more than 45.000 patients with hip and/or knee osteoarthritis. In 2013 the GLA;D project was initiated in Denmark, and until now more than 400 physiotherapists have joined the program including over 9000 patients.

The results from Sweden and Denmark are promising with reduced pain and increased physical function and health-related quality of life. The long-term goal is to establish a joint Nordic registry including results from all three countries.

What is ActiveOA?

The ActiveA program consists of three parts – a structured educational program directed towards physiotherapist in the primary health care service; an evidence-based educational and exercise program for patients with osteoarthritis located in the hip and/or knee; and an electronical registration system situated at Oslo University Hospital, Orthopedic department.

Physiotherapists with the interest of joining the ActiveA program can attend a one-day educational course which certifies them as ActiveA-therapists. Physiotherapists attending the course will receive knowledge and materials for initiating the ActiveA treatment program in their outpatient clinics. Patients can be referred to treatment by general practitioners, specialists or by personal contact. The patients will attend an osteoarthritis school where they will receive information that can help them understand their osteoarthritis disease and what they can do to improve their physical function and quality of life. Then, the patients will go through a 6-weeks individually tailored exercise program, where the main goal is to make the patients equipped to maintain their physical activity level and exercise program at home. At inclusion and at 3, 12 and 24 months, the patients will answer questions about their disease, quality of life, activity level etc. through an electronic registration system. These data will be included in a central database where the results may be used to improve our knowledge on the treatment of osteoarthritis.

Until now, 266 physiotherapists from all health regions in Norway have attended the educational program. Patients can find the closest outpatient clinic with an ActiveA-certified therapist by looking at the map on the web page Finn AktivA-klinikk.