The Royal Osteoporosis Society have joined forces with the Sunday Express for the Better Bones campaign calling for 100% Fracture Liaison Service (FLS) coverage.
The Better Bones campaign is calling for:
- A mandate from Government that everyone over 50 should be covered by a quality FLS
- £30m per year additional investment in FLS to fill the gaps in population coverage and quality
- A national Clinical Director to lead the change
In England and Wales, only half (51%) of NHS trusts have a FLS, the gold standard for systematically identifying, assessing and treating anyone who breaks a bone after age 50.
This means 90,000 people are missing out on vital osteoporosis treatment and at risk of further fractures simply because of their postcode.
We’re calling on the Government to ensure 100% access to FLS in England, meaning equal access to vital osteoporosis treatment and care. This will be in line with Scotland and Northern Ireland who currently have 100% FLS coverage. The Welsh government recently committed to delivering 100% FLS coverage. It is time for Westminster to do the same.
The burden of preventable fractures on the NHS is enormous. 1m acute hospital bed days are taken up by hip fracture patients and £2bn is spent annually on hip fracture care.
Hip fractures are ‘heart attack-level’ events, which impose major burdens on hospitals, ambulances and social care.
Many of these fractures are preventable. Half of hip fracture patients had a previous fracture that could have flagged them as being at risk.
FLS is a cost-effective model that requires modest investment for significant return.
For every £1 spend on FLS, £3.26 is saved by the NHS.
We’re calling for just £30m per annum to end the postcode lottery for fracture liaison services.
If everyone in England had access to an effective FLS, 74,000 fractures would be prevented, including 31,000 hip fractures, over five years.
This would save the NHS £665m and release 750,000 bed days.
See how your area is doing on providing vital services for preventing fractures.
Write to your MP or other elected official to ask them to raise this in Parliament.
If you are a healthcare professional working in bone health, make sure the government knows your views by signing our letter in support of the campaign.