The Estonian Psoriasis Association (EPA) was founded on March 24, 1991. There are 125 members in the association (according to data on August 1, 2010) and it acts all over Estonia. There are support groups in 3 counties (Kuressaare, Viljandi and Paide), but the majority of the members are from the capital city Tallinn. The EPA is a member of the Estonian Chamber of Disabled People which acts as a roof organisation. The EPA is financed by the Gambling Tax Council run by the Ministry of Social Affairs and through the Estonian Chamber of Disabled People. Both project and office work are financed. The EPA reports about its financial actions to the financers every four months. The financial year reports are sent to the local record branch.
The main aims of the EPA is to assemble people who affected by psoriasis, inform about the disease and assert a right of these people. 4 to 5 information days, 1 to 2 health days, a summer school and an autumn conference are annually organised. There are also 2 compulsery general meetings in the beginning and in the end of the year. Family members, friends and aquaintances , representatives of medical and therapeutical firms take part in the meetings with the view of giving as much information as possible about the disease and its medical treatment.
The representatives of such therapeutical cosmetic firms as Sebamed, Eucerin, Dr. Wolff, Babe´, Ducray, Avene´cooperate with the EPA. Dr.Elle Elberg and dr. Kersti Kivimägi and many other dermatovenereologists and rheumatism doctors have a longterm partnership with the association. The Estonian Psoriasis Asoociation has also a positive collaboration with other organisations of disabled people and chronical diseases in Estonia.
The EPA has 6 different kinds of information booklets to distribute to people and medical institutions. The booklets are about psoriasis as a disease, feeding of a person affected by psoriasis, phototherapy, psoriatic arthritis, psoriasis of children and the connection of psoriasis and allergy. There is also an application for entrance of the EPA on every booklet.
The EPA has a homepage epsol.ee, which is on amendment at the moment. In spite of the general economic depression and the retrenchment of the governmental support the last few years have been rather successful for the association. The EPA organises many events in summer and autumn, which people like to attend. During the information days arranged in autumn and winter a great deal of information is given about the contriving the disease in the time of its exasperation. The main topic of the events is also the methodology of skincare remedies and alternative treatment. The EPA always handles the espousing diseases of psoriasis and their treatment in context with psoriasis. New tendencies are discussed and especially in the field of biological treatment. The people affected by psoriasis are explained the necessity of the right diagnostics and they are recommended to have a close contact with different doctors. Since this year the relevance of social rehabilitation programs in future is being introduced. As a result of a workshop the members of the EPA decided that they require a special psoriasis treatment centre.
The Estonian Psoriasis Association has maintained contacts with the psoriasis associations in the Baltic countries and Scandinavia and we wish to continue the cooperation also in future.