Manchester Psoriasis Shout Out raising awareness of the skin condition psoriasis

Patients, researchers, doctors and nurses are teaming up to organise a fashion show, poetry evening and flash mob dance as part of a series of events around Greater Manchester to raise awareness of the skin condition psoriasis.

The Manchester Psoriasis Shout Out, organised by The University of Manchester and Salford Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, takes place from 28 April to 2 May and will highlight three key innovative academic studies into the debilitating skin condition. 

Psoriasis, an inflammatory skin condition which appears as red, scaling patches ,affects more than 1.8 million people in the UK. It is more than skin deep and can have a profound psychological and social impact. 
Researchers and clinicians in Manchester, working at The University of Manchester and Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust are making significant progress towards  advancing our understanding of psoriasis and  leading to improved care for  the condition – which model Cara Delevingne, actor Christopher Eccleston and comedian Alan Carr are all reported to have experienced.
Fashion blogger Helen Hanrahan, who herself has grappled with psoriasis for 16 years, will fly in from Dublin to lead a fashion show at The Trafford Centre on 2 May scouring different shops to put together summer and sports outfits suitable for people living with psoriasis. 

As well as fashion tips for psoriasis members of the public can visit a skin health care trailer which is calling at various sites across Manchester. The roadshow calls at St Ann’s Square (Monday 28 April); Media City UK (Tuesday 29 April), Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust (Wednesday 30 April); University Place, The University of Manchester (Thursday 1 May) and intu Trafford Centre (Friday 2 May). The Salford Royal event, which runs 9.30am-3.30pm, will provide opportunities to chat to other people with the condition, meet professionals or try a complimentary massage or ‘mindfulness’ taster session 12.30-13.00. At 2.30pm there will be a series of short presentations by leading dermatologists including  Professor Chris Griffiths, comedian/presenter and psoriasis patient Toby Hadoke and fashion blogger Helen followed by a question and answer session.

Salford-born comedian and actor John Thompson is backing The University of Manchester and Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust’s Manchester Psoriasis Shout Out campaign. Thompson, who starred in Cold Feet and more recently treaded the cobbles on Coronation Street has had the condition since 2002.

He says in a video for the Shout Out: “Had it really bad. Now very lucky to say that it has virtually gone with the help of biologics. (a type of treatment).

“There is hope out there for psoriasis sufferers who have this terrible condition. I’ve waited over 10 years and finally I can say I am on the mend. Worry not! There are things out there that will change your life, which is why I am supporting the Manchester Psoriasis Shout Out.” 

School children from New Charter Academy, in Ashton-under-Lyne, have joined university and hospital staff to perform an awareness-raising flash-dance around the city centre which will be broadcast online and via social media during the week. Budding and established poets are also penning experiences about living with the condition for a reading evening on Wednesday 30 April. 

The Shout Out also includes the re-launch of See Psoriasis: Look Deeper  - an ongoing campaign to explore the link between psoriasis and psychological well-being. A collaboration between The Psoriasis Association, The Mental Health Foundation, academics and clinicians, the See Psoriasis: Look Deeper team will be holding a reception at Manchester Town Hall to showcase the work of the campaign. 
The Medical Research Council-funded stratified medicine consortium: Psoriasis Stratification to Optimise Relevant Therapy (PSORT) will be officially launched with an event at the Imperial War Museum North, including an address by University of Manchester President Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell. 
A new training programme for health care professionals about how to work with people with psoriasis as part of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) IMPACT will also be launched at The Midland Hotel Thursday 1 May. 
Professor Chris Griffiths said: “We hope the festival of events will attract visitors from across the city and get people talking about this often overlooked skin condition.” 
For full details see Manchester Psoriasis Shout Out. (LINK) www.psoriasisshoutout.co.uk 

Notes for editors

If photographers  or reporters would like to attend any of the events, please contact Alison Barbuti, Media Relations Officer, The University of Manchester 0161 275 8383 alison.barbuti@manchester.ac.uk