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Leading Health Organizations and Patient Groups Call for 20 Percent Reduction in Fractures by 2020
Date:11/15/2011

WASHINGTON, Nov. 15, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The National Bone Health Alliance (NBHA) and Kaiser Permanente unveiled on Monday their "20/20 Vision" for reducing hip and other fractures by 20 percent by 2020 at a best practices sharing event Monday at the Kaiser Permanente Center for Total Health on Capitol Hill.

Each year, 325,000 hip fractures are reported in the United States. Of that number, approximately three-quarters are women. The combined number of all osteoporosis-related fractures is greater than the incidence of heart attacks, strokes, and new breast cancer cases each year combined, and 90 percent are people age 65 and older.

Osteoporosis-related fractures were responsible for $19 billion in costs in 2005, a figure expected to rise to $25 million by 2025. About 5.3 million people over age 50 have osteoporosis at the femur and another 34.5 million have low bone mass, or osteopenia, experts report. After sustaining a fracture, these very high-risk individuals are usually not treated with calcium, vitamin D or a prescription medication for the prevention of future fracture, a major failing of the U.S. health care system.

"Reducing the expected number of hip and other fractures by 20 percent by the end of the decade is a public health imperative," said Richard M. Dell, MD, lead orthopaedic surgeon, Healthy Bones Program, Kaiser Permanente. "It would be a monumental achievement, sparing half a million Americans of horrible pain and suffering and a loss in quality of life—as well as producing enormous cost savings throughout the health care system. The time to act is now as a growing number of Americans are reaching the age where hip and other osteoporosis-related fractures are common but are still preventable in many cases."

Representatives of a number of groups—leading physicians and experts in bone health and fracture prevention—shared best practices and laid out a plan to achieve this nationwide goal. A key elem
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SOURCE Kaiser Permanente
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