Today in the UK and Ireland, nearly 2 million people are living with psoriasis, a common, serious, lifelong, incurable condition that develops when the immune system attacks and destroys healthy cells in the body (known as an autoimmune disease). Psoriasis often places a severe burden on individuals and their families and costs the UK economy over £1.07 billion in lost productivity alone. It also represents a significant burden to the health service, with nearly a quarter of the population seeking a GP consultation on skin matters in England and Wales; 5% on psoriasis alone. This workload is not balanced by adequate dermatology education for GPs and there is a chronic shortage of dermatologists.

This report highlights the necessity to take action now to address the significant unmet need that continues to weigh heavily on the UK and Irish economies and health services, and above all the individuals living with psoriasis and its physical and emotional impact, for many years - sometimes lifelong.

From the perspective of patient wellbeing, the most important considerations are:
- Around one in three people with severe psoriasis develops the painful symptoms of psoriatic arthritis;
- Younger people with severe psoriasis have three times the risk of a heart attack compared to people of their own age without psoriasis;
- And one in ten people with the condition have contemplated suicide.

The Patients Association is proud to support the PSO What? initiative - this is an important piece of work and we would like to sincerely thank those people living with psoriasis who have shared their personal stories and spoken out on behalf of others.

Read the full 'Pso What? Fighting Back Against Psoriasis' report here.

For more information please contact Heather Eardley, Head of Projects and Partnerships on [email protected]  or 07872 633 189.