Rare Disease Day 2024: Date, history and significance | Health - Hindustan Times
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Rare Disease Day 2024: Date, history and significance

By, Delhi
Feb 27, 2024 04:28 PM IST

Rare Disease Day 2024: It is important to create awareness about rare diseases. The special day is observed on the last day of February.

Rare Disease Day 2024: Rare Diseases of the world may not get our attention on a daily basis, even when they should. When very few people get affected by a disease, it may not be a part of the mainstream news – making it difficult for us to access such information. However, rare diseases can be deadly and can claim a lot of lives. Rare Disease Day is observed every year to create awareness on the rare diseases that exist and how they can affect the daily lives of the patients. As we gear up to observe Rare Disease Day for this year, here are a few facts that we must know about the important day.

In the first year of celebrations, Rare Disease Day saw participation from eighteen countries in Europe.(Unsplash)
In the first year of celebrations, Rare Disease Day saw participation from eighteen countries in Europe.(Unsplash)

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Date:

Every year, Rare Disease Day is observed on the last day of February. Every year, Rare Disease Day is celebrated on February 28. However, since the year 2024 is a leap year, Rare Disease Day will be observed on February 29. This year, the day falls on a Thursday.

History:

In the year 2008, EURORDIS, with the Council of National Alliances announced Rare Diseases Day to be observed on February 29 keeping in mind the rarity of the date in the calendar. In the first year of celebrations, Rare Disease Day saw participation from eighteen countries in Europe. Since then, Rare Disease Day has been observed on the last day of February every year.

Significance:

According to the official website of the National Organisation for Rare Diseases, “One out of every 10 Americans is living with a rare disease. Worldwide, there are more than 300 million people with rare diseases. Too often, these individuals and families are left isolated and without answers to their medical questions. It doesn't have to be that way. Rare Disease Day is a global initiative to raise awareness and generate support for everyone who is on a rare medical journey. It takes place on the last day of February, which this year is February 29th, the rarest day of the year.”

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    Tapatrisha is Content Producer with Hindustan Times. She covers stories related to health, relationships, and fashion.

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