Osteoporosis assessment must be in QOF, charity says

Osteoporosis assessments must be included in QOF to help improve early diagnosis and identification of at-risk patients, the National Osteoporosis Society has said.

The charity wants QOF to include a register of at-risk patients who have been given a fracture risk assessment. NICE's QOF advisory committee recommended earlier this month that such an indicator be included in the 2012/13 QOF.

A spokesman for the charity said osteoporosis should be viewed in the same way as heart disease or hypertension, which certain risk factors prompting further investigation.

‘Fracturing easily, taking certain medication or a family history of osteoporosis can be signs that bones are fragile or that there is a risk of fracturing in the future,’ he said. ‘A simple assessment can help to get people on the right path to prevent broken bones.’

The National Osteoporosis Society carried out a survey of 704 people diagnosed with osteoporosis to mark its 25th anniversary.

The poll found that only 30% of osteoporosis patients had had any discussions about osteoporosis with their GP after suffering a fracture.

In addition, 26% of patients believed that they could have been diagnosed sooner and just a third of patients with osteoporosis were aware they were at risk of the disease before being diagnosed.

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