Osteoporosis experts in APAC launch online educational modules

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The Asia Pacific Consortium on Osteoporosis has created an online site hosting educational resources on osteoporosis. 

WHY IT MATTERS

There are “significant inconsistencies” in clinical practice guidelines in Asia-Pacific for the management and prevention of osteoporosis and fragility fractures, according to Dr Manju Chandran, APCO chairperson and director of the Osteoporosis and Bone Metabolism Unit at Singapore General Hospital. She also pointed out the “lack of available information” on the adherence to national guidelines in daily clinical practice.

APCO underscored the urgent need for minimum clinical standards for the assessment and management of osteoporosis in APAC. According to the group, over 80% of patients with osteoporotic fragility fracture in the region are neither assessed nor treated despite facing “twice the risk of death” early on. This is also despite the wide availability of safe and effective osteoporosis management strategies.

Given these issues, this group of osteoporosis experts developed the interactive, 17-module series called Health Care Professional Peer-to-Peer Educational Modules. It features a massive educational slide deck comprising 231 slides.

With this, APCO aims to equip osteoporosis “champions” in the region with information, supporting data, topical literature summaries and best practice examples that support APCO’s minimum clinical standards outlined in its framework for osteoporosis care launched in January this year.

“Increasing awareness and education among healthcare professionals in the Asia-Pacific is imperative to bringing change to the real-world clinical practice of osteoporosis care and fracture prevention,” Dr Chandran said.

THE LARGER CONTEXT

By 2050, around 319 million people aged 50 and above in APAC are projected to be at high risk of osteoporotic fracture, making up more than half of the world’s hip fracture cases, noted Dr Chandran.

The economic burden of the treatment of a single hip fracture in the region now is “extremely high”, equating to around 19% of APAC’s GDP per capita, according to Dr Ip Tai-Pang, an APCO committee member. In Hong Kong, for example, medical costs of hip fractures are expected to reach $243 million over the next two decades from $85 million in 2018.

ON THE RECORD

“[The] launch of the APCO Education Modules demonstrates the organisation’s ongoing commitment to achieving greater consistency in national and regional clinical practice guidelines for the screening, diagnosis and management of osteoporosis in the Asia-Pacific,” said Dr Philippe Halbout, member of the APACO executive committee and CEO of International Osteoporosis Foundation. 

“Osteoporosis experts can use the new APCO HCP Education Modules either in full or in part to inspire and further inform their peers and professional communities on those at high-risk for fracture who require identification and assessment, based on their medical and fracture history, risk factors, co-occurring diseases, country-specific osteoporosis screening tool results and falls risk,” Dr Ip from Hong Kong also said.



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