What’s New and Noteworthy in Bone Health
As mid-June dawns, we’ve celebrated May, National Osteoporosis Month, have had a fantastic Interdisciplinary Symposium on Osteoporosis (ISO) in La Jolla, CA, launched our National Bone Health Policy Institute and are just about to embark upon the launch of our Cities program in Houston, TX. We dreamed it—and we are doing it thanks to your incredible support and encouragement. Thank you!
At NOF, we’re keenly aware that the leadership and actions of the collective is important. With that said, there are a few special people who have truly left an indelible mark on our progress and our purpose. Please join me in celebrating and honoring the leadership, service, and dynamic contributions of our outgoing board chair, Judy Black. Many of you know that Judy realized early on how important it would be to develop an advocacy strategy. Thanks to her vision, the Surgeon General’s Report on Bone Health was created and it was used as the foundation for the research and advocacy activities needed to advance the field. She came back to NOF and helped us set our new dynamic strategy and was responsible for recruiting a new cadre of board leaders who will stand with us and see her vision to fruition. Serving with Judy helped define purpose, volunteer leadership investment, and the importance of putting patients first in a movement. What an honor it has been to learn from her!
The greatest tribute we can pay to Judy, and all of those who have invested dearly in this mission, is to continue to push for progress. Following are some of the highlights:
DXA Reimbursement Legislation: Is picking up steam in the House (HR 2693) and Senate (S 283). Please add your voice to this important legislation. If your Senator and/or House member has not yet signed on, please ping them via our Advocacy Portal, to let them know how important this is to you. Go to www.nof.org/news-events/advocacy/ and click on Emails Needed.
National Osteoporosis Month: Our 35 Ways to Stay Bone Strong was clicked through, tweeted and retweeted, and had very positive feedback about timeliness and usefulness. Getting our message out is critical and we salute the support from our partners, like Complete Care Medical, who shared this information with its 49,800 members! You can find it at www.bonetalk.org/learn-more.
ISO, La Jolla, CA: We had 330 attendees at ISO this year. And, many attendees told us “this was the best yet”. We are very thankful to our trustees, Drs. Andrea Singer and Susan Bukata, for putting together a program that reflected the latest in science, new ways to think through clinical management of challenging cases, and sessions that were interactive allowing participants to engage with the experts.
We are very thankful to our talented keynote speaker, John Leland, who spoke to us about his book, Happiness is a Choice You Make. If you are thinking through how to get more happiness in your life, learn from the sage seniors he interviewed. You’ll want to check out our upcoming podcast in early July featuring John Leland and NOF Trustee, Barbara Hannah Grufferman, on this topic. Click here to listen.
In conjunction with our partners at Osteoporosis Canada, we launched BoneFit™ at ISO and had 26 attendees interested in learning how to be better physical therapists and fitness instructors working with people who have osteoporosis (and are fragile) or with people who have fractured and are going back to exercise to regain strength and vitality. We are very thankful to the support of the Moca Foundation for supporting this new program. Part two will be conducted in the fall in New Mexico. Stay tuned as this program launches in communities near you!
Our sponsors generously support this innovative clinical learning conference and we are very thankful they not only make financial investments, they attend and fully engage. That is partnership!
Healthy Bones/Health Cities/Houston: We salute Drs. Laila Tabatabai, Nihad Rianon and Robert Gagel for working with Dr. Andrea Singer to launch HB/HC June 13th and 14th in the great city of Houston. The concept of this program is to educate family physicians, internists, and oby/gyns about osteoporosis. We hope to provide them with the support needed to treat patients; to facilitate a learning environment to bring others into the field; and, to hand off difficult cases to experienced mentors in their geographic area. Our goal is to provide this program in 8 cities in the coming 2-3 years. We’ll let you know where we will be next and hope you will nominate doctors and advanced practice professionals you know to participate.
ONJ Letter and Lecture: As you know, one of the major issues in our patient community is the fear of the rare side effect of osteonecrosis of the jaw (ONJ). We’ve worked with the American Dental Association to develop a letter that can be shared from a treating physician to a dentist regarding a high risk of fracture compared to a real but very rare risk of medication-related ONJ. We’ll also be sharing a fantastic lecture, from ISO, on this topic.
While we just celebrated Father’s Day, it’s never too late to lovingly share health tips. Please remind the men in your life that men can have osteoporosis and that managing their bone health will ensure they will be the strong, stalwart presence in your life for a long time to come! Thank you for your support of NOF’s mission! As you can see, we are active on many fronts addressing gaps and empowering osteoporosis patients, caregivers, and healthcare professionals. Our programs exist and will thrive through philanthropy and your continued trust in us. Thank you for considering an investment to fuel our efforts. We count on your support to maintain momentum!
Chief Executive Officer and Chief Advocate