Osteoporosis is a serious and growing healthcare problem in Europe, resulting in more than 4.3 million fragility fractures and enormous healthcare costs in excess of €56 billion annually. Nevertheless, it remains vastly underdiagnosed and undertreated, with an estimated 71% of European women at high risk not receiving preventative treatment.
To put a spotlight on the issue in the lead-up to World Osteoporosis Day, the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) has launched a new interactive online map that presents key data from the Scorecard for Osteoporosis in Europe (SCOPE 2021) and the related Compendium of Country-specific Reports.(1,2) The reports review and describe the current burden of osteoporosis in each of the EU member states plus Switzerland and the UK, and audit key metrics in four domains: burden of disease; policy framework; service provision; and service uptake.
The SCOPE 2021 Map provides a snapshot of five key facts and statistics for each of the 29 European countries. Viewers can then click to access their country’s more detailed illustrated fact sheet, with a comparative scorecard.
The new Map enhances the existing SCOPE 2021 platform which provides many resources, including a summary report, country-specific fact sheets, slide sets and infographics.(3) All resources may be freely used by researchers, osteoporosis advocates, and policy officials who wish to learn more about the burden of osteoporosis in individual European countries and Europe as a whole. Importantly, SCOPE 2021 allows policy officials to benchmark their country’s osteoporosis burden, service provision and uptake against other European countries, or to measure gaps and progress at the national level.
Earlier this year, upon the publication of the SCOPE 2021 country-specific report, Professor John Kanis, Honorary President of IOF, pointed to the wide differences in service provision and uptake across Europe, also noting:
“All 29 European countries surveyed in SCOPE 2021 face an enormous osteoporosis and fragility fracture burden, with a substantial impact on current and future healthcare budgets. As the number of women and men aged 75 years and older is expected to increase by more than 29% and 42% respectively between 2019 and 2034, we project the annual number of osteoporotic fractures to increase by approximately +24.8% in that time period, reaching 5.34 million annual fragility fractures.”
“These alarming projections should spur concerted action on the part of all healthcare authorities in Europe.”
Since its launch, the SCOPE 2021 initiative has been very influential and the findings widely used to advocate for advances in osteoporosis prevention and treatment in different European countries. In particular, the disconcerting finding that close to 15 million European women at high risk remain untreated exposes an enormous treatment gap and certainly suggests that there is an urgent need to prioritize osteoporosis prevention and care.
Professor Cyrus Cooper, IOF President, stated:
“Only nine of the 29 European countries surveyed in the SCOPE 2021 report recognize osteoporosis or musculoskeletal diseases as a national health priority. This must change. To prompt action for prevention, IOF calls for a Europe-wide strategy and parallel national strategies to provide coordinated osteoporosis care and to reduce debilitating fractures and their impact on individual lives and healthcare systems.”
The new SCOPE 2021 online map and related resources are available at https://www.osteoporosis.foundation/scope-2021
1. Willers C, Norton N, Harvey NC, Jacobson T, Johansson H, Lorentzon M, McCloskey EV, Borgström F, Kanis JA & the SCOPE review panel of IOF. Osteoporosis in Europe: A Compendium of country-specific reports. Arch Osteoporos 17, 23 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11657-021-00969-8
2. Kanis JA, Norton N, Harvey NC, Jacobson T, Johansson H, Lorentzon M, McCloskey EV, Willers C, Borgström F. SCOPE 2021: a new scorecard for osteoporosis in Europe. Arch Osteoporos 16, 82 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11657-020-00871-9
3. SCOPE 2021 resources, including the Map, Summary Report and Country factsheets https://www.osteoporosis.foundation/scope-2021
About SCOPE 2021 and the Compendium of Country-Specific Reports
The mission of the scorecard for osteoporosis in Europe (SCOPE) project is to raise awareness of osteoporosis care in Europe. SCOPE permits an in-depth comparison of the quality of care of osteoporosis across the 27 member states of the European Union (EU27), together with the UK and Switzerland (termed EU27+2). SCOPE summarises key indicators of the burden of osteoporosis and its management in each of the member states of the European Union to draw attention to the disparities in healthcare provision that can serve in the setting of benchmarks to inform patients, healthcare providers, and policymakers in the EU. This update of the original SCOPE publication and scorecard compares the original results from 2010 to data as recent as 2019. The newer data provides a more recent overview, as well as a way to compare the management of osteoporosis over time, within and between the EU27+2 countries. In developing this scorecard, the aim is to stimulate a balanced, common, and optimal approach to the management of osteoporosis throughout the EU27+2. All SCOPE resources are available here: https://www.osteoporosis.foundation/scope-2021
The International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF) is the world's largest nongovernmental organization dedicated to the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis and related musculoskeletal diseases. IOF members include committees of scientific researchers as well as 300 patient, medical and research organizations – all working together to make fracture prevention and healthy mobility a worldwide healthcare priority. https://www.osteoporosis.foundation @iofbonehealth
About World Osteoporosis Day
World Osteoporosis Day is marked annually on October 20 to raise awareness of bone health and osteoporosis prevention. The campaign, this year under the banner of ‘Step up for bone health’, calls for individuals worldwide to action for bone health and osteoporosis prevention.
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