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200 delegates from 60 countries gather to more effectively fight the “silent epidemic”; IOF members win US$ 126,000 in grants

View full meeting report and photo gallery

BANGKOK, Thailand
Embargoed until September 30, 2005, 0600 GMT

For the first time, the largest global gathering of people fighting osteoporosis took place in Asia.

Held in Bangkok, Thailand from September 27-30, 2005, the IOF World Wide Conference of Osteoporosis Patient Societies gathered 200 delegates who manage osteoporosis patient societies in some 60 countries.

Osteoporosis, in which the bones become brittle and fracture easily, affects one out of three women over 50 worldwide (more than breast cancer) and one out of five men over 50 (more than prostate cancer).

The biennial meeting was opened by Her Royal Highness Princess Galyani Vadhana Krom Luang Naradhiwas Rajanagarindra., patron of the Thai Osteoporosis Society.

“It is particularly important that we are meeting in Bangkok because the number of people suffering from osteoporosis is growing fastest in the Asian region,” noted IOF Chief Executive Officer Daniel Navid. “By 2050 one out of every two hip fractures worldwide will occur in Asia.”

As an added indication of the importance of Asia, Mr Navid noted that in 2008 the IOF World Congress on Osteoporosis, which is expected to draw more than 5,000 delegates, will also be held in Bangkok, marking the first time that this scientific conference will take place in this region.

At the conference, eleven national osteoporosis societies won IOF grants valued at US$ 126,000.

IOF-Novartis Osteoporosis Education Grants

Five grants of US$10,000 each for the most imaginative education projects were awarded to:

  • Indonesian Osteoporosis Society (Indonesia) for their project “PEROSI campaign”
  • Endocrinology and Metabolism Research Center (Iran) for the project “Constructing stronger bones”
  • Jordanian Osteoporosis Prevention Society (Jordan) for their project “Be good to your bones”
  • Fundacion de Osteoporosis y Enfermedades Metabolicas Oseas (Panama) for their project “My bank of bones”
  • Taiwanese Osteoporosis Association (Taiwan) for their project “Public education materials”

IOF-Roche GSK Communications Grants

Three grants of US$10,000 each for creative communications campaigns were awarded to:

  • Norwegian Osteoporosis Society (Norway) for their project “Nordic walking”
  • FHOEMO (Spain) for their project “Spanish campaign on osteoporosis”
  • Uruguayan Rheumatology Society (Uruguay) for their project “Advertising for prevention of osteoporosis”

IOF-Amgen Health Professionals Awareness Grants

Three grants of US$10,000 each for innovative ways to communicate with health professionals were awarded to:

  • Beinvernd (Iceland) for their project “Osteoporosis concerns us all!”
  • Indian Society of Bone and Mineral Research (India) for their project “National Bone Health Quiz”
  • Osteoporosis New Zealand (New Zealand) for their project “Osteoporosis management guidelines”

IOF Linda Edwards Memorial Grant

This grant of Swiss francs 20,000 is in memory of the late Linda Edwards, who was head of the (UK) National Osteoporosis Society and one of the founders of the global osteoporosis patients movement. It was awarded to:

  • Slovene Osteoporosis Patient Society (Slovenia)

Some other highlights:

  • In a keynote address, Mechai Viravaidya, chairman of the Population and Community Development Association, urged IOF members to think outside the box and to be courageous and creative in their efforts to change health care policies.
  • Dr Wichai Thienthavorn, permanent secretary, Thailand Ministry of Health, noted steps that his government is taking to improve the diagnosis and treatment of people at risk of osteoporosis in the country.
  • Participants took part in six workshops covering: advertising, patient support, exercise, growth in your society, lobbying and special events/major donors.
  • Delegates were briefed on plans for World Osteoporosis Day 2005,which will be held globally on October 20. The theme is “Move it or Lose it”, the role of exercise in building strong bones and reducing fracture risks. Some highlights of WOD 2005 include:
    • “Move it or Lose it”, a popular report written by Professor Helmut Minne, IOF Board member
    • Eight 30-second Public Service Announcements featuring leading global personalities and celebrities
    • A new osteoporosis song and music video, produced in Spanish and English by singer/songwriter Erika Ender “Un Cuerpo Sano/A Health Body”.
  • Delegates participated in training on how to give an interview and make an effective presentation
  • In associated events, IOF staged an IOF Asian Journalists Media Seminar and the first IOF Beauties and the Bones activity, in which seven beauty queens from four continents spoke about the importance for young people to “invest in their bones”.

Sponsors of the IOF WWC included:


Fonterra Brands
McCann Erickson
Royal Orchid Sheraton
Weber Shandwick


Osteoporosis, in which the bones become porous and break easily, is one of the world's most common and debilitating diseases. The result: pain, loss of movement, inability to perform daily chores, and in many cases, death. One out of three women over 50 will experience osteoporotic fractures, as will one out of five men 1, 2, 3. Unfortunately, screening for people at risk is far from being a standard practice. Osteoporosis can, to a certain extent, be prevented, it can be easily diagnosed and effective treatments are available.

The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) is the only worldwide organization dedicated to the fight against osteoporosis. It brings together scientists, physicians, patient societies and corporate partners. Working with its 170 member societies in 84 locations, and other healthcare-related organizations around the world, IOF encourages awareness and prevention, early detection and improved treatment of osteoporosis.

  1. Melton U, Chrischilles EA, Cooper C et al. How many women have osteoporosis? Journal of Bone Mineral Research, 1992; 7:1005-10
  2. Kanis JA et al. Long-term risk of osteoporotic fracture in Malmo. Osteoporosis International, 2000; 11:669-674
  3. Melton LJ, et al. Bone density and fracture risk in men. JBMR. 1998; 13:No 12:1915

International Osteoporosis Foundation 2005 Osteoporosis Journalism Awards
These awards recognize outstanding print reporting about osteoporosis. With prizes of USD 17,000, the closing date for award entries is January 31, 2006. For more information please go to IOF website journalism award.

For more information on osteoporosis and IOF please visit:

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