Audit Report, December 2001
Osteoporosis in the European Community: A Call to Action
- Little progress has been made on the majority of the eight recommendations published in the 1998 Report on Osteoporosis in the European Community (EC).
- The number of osteoporotic hip fractures in the EC has risen to more than 480,000 annually, an increase of more than 25% over four years.
- Osteoporosis now costs more than Euro 4.8 billion annually in hospital healthcare alone (excluding rehabilitation and nursing home costs) - a 33% increase over three years.
- A co-ordinated, dynamic data collection system to monitor osteoporotic fractures across Europe is urgently needed to document the size of the problem and to monitor changes.
- The development of best practices to produce practical, cost effective strategies with measurable targets for reducing osteoporotic fractures must be implemented.
- Access and payment of bone density scans must be improved for people with osteoporosis risk factors, especially before the first fracture.
- Payment of proven therapies for people with osteoporosis risk factors must be improved especially before the first fracture.
- Improved accessibility to diagnosis and proven therapies alone are not enough. Better education of policy makers, healthcare professionals and the general public is necessary to reduce osteoporotic fractures.