Colombia's CTF Mentors Participate In The First FLS Café

Colombia FLS Café

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Advanced FLSs in Colombia participated in a meeting to exchange best practices to achieve excellence in the clinical care of patients at risk of fragility fractures.

The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) and the Asociación Colombiana de Osteoporosis (ACOMM) held the first Fracture Liaison Service (FLS) Café "Escalando a la Excelencia" in the framework of the Capture The Fracture® (CTF) program in Colombia. 

The meeting was organized by the CTF Mentors in Colombia: Dr. Adriana Medina, Dr. Carlos Arteaga and Dr. Edgar Castro. The welcoming remarks were made by Dr. Miguel Angel Gonzalez, orthopaedist and current president of ACOMM, who highlighted the continued collaboration of IOF and ACOMM in supporting local FLS.

The FLS Café is a meeting and exchange space where mentors and members of FLSs share experiences and best practices to generate a learning community. On this occasion, the FLS Café was aimed at more developed FLSs that are already in operation. 

CTF’s Colombian FLS network is composed of 16 FLSs divided into silver (4), bronze (5) and blue (7) categories. All of them are included and visible in the global Map of Best Practice of the CTF program. Dr. Adriana Medina, endocrinologist and coordinator of the FLS at Hospital San José Centro in Bogotá, emphasized the importance of implementing FLSs and strengthening them. 

Colombia FLS Café
Colombian FLS on the CTF Map of Best Practice

At the same time, the results of the first national survey on the state of FLS in Colombia were presented. This tool developed by the mentors made it possible to see, for the first time, the degree of development of the most advanced FLSs in Colombia. The results reflect responses from FLSs belonging to the private (58%), public (25%) and mixed (16%) sectors. Some findings: 

  • 100% have a coordinator: geriatrician (42%), orthopedics and traumatology (42%) and endocrinology (16%) 
  • All work with a multidisciplinary team 
  • 67% and about 2 out of 3 have a process of self-evaluation and data analysis every 3 to 6 months with the objective of feedback and improvement plans.
  • 100% have a system for recording patient data. 
  • 64% have a falls prevention program and 46% have a falls assessment protocol.
  • 31% establish a structured patient follow-up pathway.

The mentors, together with the FLSs, were able to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the current FLSs that will be the focus of their work. In this way, their results opened the subsequent discussion by identifying:

Strengths: data recording, active patient identification, interdisciplinary group work and investigation of secondary causes of osteoporosis.

Weaknesses: fragmentation of the service which makes patient follow-up difficult, institutional support, falls prevention program (timeliness), initiation of treatment

"The importance of having spaces for self-evaluation and teamwork is fundamental within each of the services. It allows us to identify what the FLS excels at and can serve as a model for others and, also, to recognize areas that need more work, as well as opportunities. The survey will definitely help FLSs to grow individually and also as a whole in Colombia," said Dr. Edgar Castro, geriatrician and FLS coordinator at Hospital de Caldas in Manizales.

Colombia FLS Café
The challenge of FLSs during the COVID-19 pandemic was also a matter of debate.

To start the debate, Dr. Carlos Arteaga, rheumatologist and FLS coordinator at the Clínica del Country, reviewed the FLS key performance indicators of the IOF CTF program and stated "we have a goal which is to improve the health system to be able to intervene or better capture patients who have a fracture and prevent second or third fractures that may occur in patients with osteoporosis. We as mentors can accompany them in the different stages of this process." 

The Colombian mentoring group plans to hold a second FLS Café with a focus on the Colombian FLSs that are just starting on September 20, 2021.

At the conclusion of the meeting, Lic. Mónica Caló, regional manager of IOF LATAM, said: "The FLS Café has been an excellent exercise of self-evaluation for the FLSs and also of connection between the FLSs and their local mentors. Our goal as IOF is that these spaces contribute to open a channel of dialogue between them to achieve excellence both individually and for all national FLS in Colombia. It is remarkable the role of the mentors who collaborate in a personalized way with each one because each FLS is different, has its own characteristics and is in a different stage of development, but they all have the potential to achieve excellence." 

Do you want your FLS to also be part of the CTF network in Colombia? Complete the Best Practice Framework Questionnaire to join the program, receive an evaluation by experts and get recognition for the performance and achievements of your service. FLSs are evaluated according to the 13 standards of the CTF Best Practice Framework.