NHS Long Term Plan Webinar Series
Osteoporosis and Fragility Fractures
A public health imperative
8 June 2021
13:00 - 14:00 GMT
The UK has an ageing population. As we age, we tend to get long term conditions and need more health and social care support. Osteoporosis and fragility fractures pose a significant threat to the health and wellbeing of large numbers of elderly people and represents a public health issue that needs to be addressed. 1 The clinical management of patients with osteoporosis and fragility fractures is already complex and fracture-related burden is expected to increase over the coming decades. 2 Further, disparity, disruption and deconditioning during the COVID-19 pandemic mean that we could potentially see “unprecedented” rises in fractures in the near future.
Fragility fractures are potentially catastrophic injuries. Elderly patients who fall are more likely to suffer significant consequences, such as a loss of independence and confidence, leading to physical and mental deterioration and frailty. 3
The already considerable economic burden of osteoporotic fractures on local healthcare economies may increase as a consequence of patients receiving suboptimal care during the pandemic. 4 Yet, much of this is preventable. Decisive action by health professionals, health services and government can help. The NHS and UK Government has stated that protecting the frail and elderly is an important area to improve care.5 Taking action on osteoporosis is a vital part of this being delivered on.
Highlight the vulnerability of elderly people, the impact of COVID-19 and especially those with osteoporosis making the case to accelerate re-engagement with them to reduce their risk of a fragility fracture (disparity, disruption and deconditioning).
Create urgency to identify and optimise treatment for people at high fracture risk. Reinforce the importance of osteoporosis and the personal, social and economic consequence of not treating.
Position osteoporosis management as part of the NHS commitments to the UK’s ageing population to stay well and live independently free from pain and disability and align how this supports elements of the NHS Long Term Plan.
Highlight the benefits of collaboration to help achieve improved screening and management of patients at risk of osteoporotic fragility fractures: showcase a population based working model of care developed with the Northern Health Science Alliance and AHSNs.
 IOF – Broken Bones. Broken Lives. Available at https://www.osteoporosis.foundation/sites/iofbonehealth/files/2019-06/1.%202018_EU6_Report_BrokenBonesBrokenLives_English.pdf Accessed March 2021
 Borgström et al., Fragility fractures in Europe: burden, management and opportunities. Arch Osteoporos. 2020;15(1):59
 NICE impact falls and fragility services. Available at https://www.nice.org.uk/Media/Default/About/what-we-do/Into-practice/measuring-uptake/NICE-Impact-falls-and-fragility-fractures.pdf Accessed March 2021
 Fuggle et al., 2021. How has COVID-19 affected the treatment of osteoporosis? An IOF-NOF-ESCEO global survey. Osteoporos Int. 2021. Online ahead of print
 Healthy Ageing and Caring – https://www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/clinical-policy/older-people/healthy-ageing-caring/ Accessed March 2021
Job code: GB-NPS-0421-00018. Date of Preparation: April 2021
This webinar has been jointly organised by Govconnect and Amgen and funded by Amgen.