NICE is committed to promoting equality, eliminating unlawful discrimination and fostering good relations between people with particular protected characteristics and others. In producing guidance and advice, NICE aims to comply fully with all legal obligations to: promote race and disability equality and equality of opportunity between men and women, eliminate unlawful discrimination on grounds of race, disability, age, sex, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity (including women post-delivery), sexual orientation, and religion or belief (these are protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010).
People with osteoarthritis that has had a substantial adverse effect on their ability to carry out normal day to day activities for at least 12 months are likely to be considered disabled under the Equality Act 2010. Osteoarthritis is more common in women and older people. Twenty percent of people aged between 50 and 59 have symptomatic osteoarthritis whereas 50% of people aged over 80 years have the condition. Age and sex are protected characteristics under the Equality Act 2010.