Launch of National Council for Secondary Fracture Prevention in Turkey
On May 23, 2022, the kick-off meeting of the National Council for Secondary Fracture Prevention was organized by IOF within the framework of the in Capture the Fracture® initiative in Turkey and in close partnership with key Turkish experts and stakeholders involved in post-fracture care and secondary fracture prevention, including representatives of the Turkish Osteoporosis Society, the Osteoporosis Patient Society of Turkey, the Society of Life with Osteoporosis, the Society of Endocrinology and Metabolism of Turkey, the Turkish Society of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, The Turkish Orthpaedics and Traumatology Association, and the Fragility Fracture Network Turkey.
Osteoporosis and fragility fractures are a major public health issue in Turkey, a study reported that 65% of women,46% of men, aged 65 years and over were found to have osteoporosis.
As reflected in the IOF global hip fracture map, Turkey is considered a high-risk country for hip fractures, particularly in women. Nevertheless, despite the high prevalence and a predicted increase in fractures that is forecast for the future, osteoporosis is not officially accepted as a chronic disease in Turkey.
The need to improve osteoporosis and fragility fracture prevention in Turkey is urgent. Currently, medical approaches to fragility fractures are inconsistent, and the treatment gap is enormous. In fact, the number of patients receiving treatment for secondary fracture prevention is estimated to be as low as 10%, even though fracture incidence is on the increase, especially for hip fracture. In 2009, there were approximately 24,000 cases of hip fracture in Turkey (73% of which were in women). This number is expected to increase to nearly 64,000 by 2035.
Moreover, fractures represent a tremendous financial burden on the Turkish healthcare system, and this burden will increase dramatically, with direct costs for hip fractures expected to reach $205 million USD in 2050. As a financial comparison: the total spending on healthcare in 2019 was €201 billion (Turkish Statistical Institute, 2021).
The launch of the National Council for Secondary Fracture Prevention, an important coalition of experts and stakeholders, will serve to enhance and expand the ongoing efforts of the Capture the Fracture® initiative to improve secondary fracture prevention in Turkey.
Coalitions unite existing international and national advocates, medical & scientific societies, patient societies, multispecialty societies, and NGOs – and serve as a catalyst for optimal broad-based fracture prevention efforts at the national level.
The National Council will build on previous efforts carried out through the Capture the Fracture®. The training of five exceedingly active FLS mentors, who are essential for promoting and supporting the establishment of new Fracture Liaison Services (FLS) in Turkey, has been an important step forward. Through their work and thanks to educational webinars and workshops, potential sites for implementation of FLS have been identified and support has been provided to help the FLS get started. Indeed, the efforts to implement FLS through the experts involved in the Capture the Fracture® initiative been very effective. In May 2021, Turkey had only four FLS running and mapped on the Capture the Fracture® Map of Best Practice. Today, Turkey counts 16 FLS on the Capture the Fracture® Map of Best Practice, which represents a 300% growth in just one year. This development was also supported thanks to the availability of the new online Best Practice Framework application platform in Turkish translation. As well, FLS can take advantage of the many resources and materials to help FLS getting started and for existing FLS to improve the quality of their services, thanks to the establishment of an informative online resources hub, the Capture the Fracture® Resource Centre.
The kick off meeting of the National Coalition was a highly fruitful, top-level gathering of key experts. In collaboration with Prof. Şansın Tüzün, FLS expert and CTF Mentor, 13 experts and representatives of national societies discussed the current state of secondary fracture prevention in Turkey, and how to improve the situation by driving policy change and fostering implementation of FLS
Dr Philippe Halbout, IOF CEO, introduced the meeting by presenting the Capture the Fracture® initiative and its role in supporting Turkey to make secondary fracture prevention a healthcare priority. Prof. Tüzün subsequently gave a presentation on the state of secondary fracture prevention in Turkey, and additional speakers, Prof. Önder Aydıngöz and Prof. Dilek Gogas Yavuz explained the respective perspective of orthopaedists and endocrinologists when it comes to secondary fracture prevention in the country.
Prof. Tüzün concluded the meeting by stating: ”The meeting was an important first step in establishing a robust and influential coalition of experts in the country and will be followed by other gatherings to discuss concrete strategy and actions for the country. We thank the IOF for all the support provided and look forward to advancing post-fracture care in Turkey.“