Physical branch meetings are currently cancelled due to COVID-19. However there are virtual activities being run by some branches. Please contact your local branch for more information.

We hope you find the information on these pages helpful. Our team is working tirelessly to provide up to date advice in relation to the COVID-19/Coronavirus pandemic. Record numbers of people are now turning to NASS for support, and we hope to be here for everyone. Our helpline and advice service are only possible thanks to donations from people like you.

If you are able to make a donation to NASS today, we'd be so grateful.


Leave a gift in your Will

Gifts left in Wills (also known as legacies) have made a huge difference to NASS. In fact, last year 59% of all income was from gifts in Wills, so we really wouldn’t be able to continue without them.

They have helped us to improve our services, launch new projects, and fund vital research into better treatments for AS. However, many people are still unaware that they can help us in this way.

We know thinking about writing a Will is a very personal topic. That’s why we’ve launched two new partnerships that will help you think about your wishes with professional support.

We’ve joined Remember a Charity, a group of over 190 charities working together to raise the profile of legacies among the public and encourage supporters to consider leaving a gift in their Will.

We want to raise awareness of how gifts in Wills can help us to answer one vital question – how do we end the eight-year delay in diagnosing AS? Watch the video below to find out our answer, and how you can help.

NASS is proud to partner with the National Free Wills Network, giving supporters and Members the opportunity to meet with a local solicitor and have a simple Will made or updated for free.

Around 30 million people in Britain do not have a Will – that’s about 70% of the population. An up to date Will is the best way to ensure your wishes are respected and your loved ones are looked after. If you don’t have a will, your assets may be distributed according to the law rather than your wishes.

How does it work?

1. Simply get in touch and let us know that you would like to write a Will for free. We’ll pass your details on to the National Free Wills Network.

2. You’ll be sent a pack in the mail within 3 weeks, enclosing details of local participating solicitors.

3. Contact your chosen solicitor, ensuring to mention the National Free Wills Network. The solicitor will draw up your simple Will. You won’t have to pay – as a member, NASS pays the cost of the Will at a special discounted rate.

There is no obligation to leave a gift in your Will to NASS, but we really hope you choose to do so. Every gift, no matter the size, will help us to continue our work and transform the future for people affected by AS.

Transforming the future of AS

Gifts in Wills have helped us to fund life-changing research. Here are some examples of how supporters like you are transforming the future of AS.

The Richard Horsford Award

A National Survey of the Provision and Attitudes towards Hydrotherapy

Led by Melanie Martin from Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Trust and Claire Jeffries from Solent NHS Trust, this study mapped the current provision of NHS hydrotherapy services for axial SpA (AS) across the UK and captured patients’ experience of hydrotherapy. The results highlighted the benefits of hydrotherapy in managing AS, the challenges of accessing hydrotherapy due to pool closures and the importance of continuing to deliver hydrotherapy through the NHS. Talks are  currently in progress with the British Society for Spondyloarthritis (BRITSpA) about continuing this very important research. Read more

The Audrey L Pape Award

Improving the assessment of fatigue in Axial Spondyloarthropathy

Fatigue is a hugely important issue for many people living with axial SpA (AS). Led by Kirsty Haywood and Nathan Pearson at the University of Warwick, this study aims to develop a greater understanding of the impact fatigue has for people with axial SpA (AS). The project is being conducted in three phases; a systematic review of the quality and acceptability of fatigue questionnaires used in axial SpA (AS) fatigue assessment, qualitative research with patients, healthcare professionals and researchers, and finally developing and comprehensive questionnaire.

The Kathleen Grace Upton Award

Assessing the impact of rehabilitative interventions on the natural history of ankylosing spondylitis

Brand new for 2019, this research is led by Matthew Young at the University of Bath, and aims to determine the long-term impact of rehabilitative interventions on the natural history of AS with two objectives:

  • to prepare over 30 years of past clinical records for analysis
  • to conduct an initial retrospective analysis assessing the role of residential rehabilitation courses on the natural history of AS

The results from this groundbreaking research will give us a deeper understanding of AS, help to predict biological and social outcomes, and help to determine the true benefits of treatments and interventions.

Why do we need your support?

  • 220k

    Adults in the UK

    1 in 200 of the adult population in the UK have axial SpA (AS). That's twice as many as multiple sclerosis and Parkinson's disease.

  • 24

    Average age

    Axial SpA (AS) is a condition that affects young people. Symptoms start late teens to early twenties, with the average age of onset being 24.

  • 8.5

    Years to diagnosis

    The current average delay to diagnosis from when symptoms start is 8.5 years, by which irreversible damage to the spine may have occurred.

  • 59%

    Mental health

    59% of people with axial SpA (AS) report experiencing mental health problems compared to 25% of those with musculoskeletal conditions overall.