Last updated:1st March 2017

History of NASS

NASS was founded by a group of patients, doctors and physiotherapists at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases (RNHRD) in Bath in 1976.

Founding members included the late Dr Allan St John Dixon, MD, FRCP, who had a long and distinguished career in rheumatology and was still involved with NASS as its current Vice President until his death in June 2014. 

Dr Dixon worked on the formation of NASS with Mike Tanfield and the late John Coates, both of whom had AS. They were joined by Dr Richard Jacoby and Dr Anthony Clarke as Medical Advisers. 

The first NASS director, Fergus Rogers, joined in 1980 and soon became a commanding figure in the world of AS. He did a huge amount to raise the profile of AS and the needs of people with AS. Fergus was  instrumental in setting up many of our NASS branches. He is remembered fondly by many NASS members for his immeasurable care and support.

NASS has 3 main aims:

  • To seek a cure for ankylosing spondylitis and related conditions, and improve their treatment in the UK
  • To promote awareness of these conditions in the UK
  • To provide guidance, advice and information for people affected by these conditions including their families, their carers and their employers

NASS is the only registered charity in the UK dedicated to the needs of people with AS in the UK.




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