February 28, 2014
Rare Disease Day highlights the global health challenges posed by rare disorders. The theme for 2014 is “Join Together For Better Care”
Rare Disease Day was established in 2008 by the European Rare Disease Organization (EURORDIS). The following year the group asked the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) to be a partner in promoting the event and to sponsor Rare Disease Day in the United States. Every year more countries join in celebrating Rare Disease Day and last year over 70 countries participated.
In the U.S., any disease affecting fewer than 200,000 people is considered rare. An estimated 7,000 rare diseases affect nearly 30 million Americans. In other words, almost one in 10 Americans suffers from rare diseases.
About 80 percent of rare diseases are caused by faulty genes. The National Institute of Health estimates that half of all those affected by rare diseases are children. Most of those childhood-onset disorders are debilitating and life threatening.
Visit our organization’s page at this website: http://www.rarediseaseday.org/friend/307 for more information about Rare Disease Day and how you can become involved.