It is estimated that fractures resulting from osteoporosis or low bone mass cost our health care system more than $19 billion each year. Experts predict that cost will rise to $25.3 billion by 2025. Early diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis alone has been demonstrated to dramatically reduce fracture rates and generate substantial savings overall. In addition, osteogenesis imperfecta is characterized by fragile bones and frequent fractures. It is estimated to afflict an estimated 40,000 people. Paget's disease of the bone, a disorder that results in enlarged and deformed bones in one or more parts of the body, afflicts an estimated 700,000 Americans over the age of 60.
Introduced by U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York in May 2011, The "Bone Health Promotion and Research Act" (S. 966) would create a national bone health program focused on education, prevention and research by allowing for national educational outreach through the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC); state grants for comprehensive osteoporosis and related bone disease surveillance and prevention programs; and expanded research activities at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
A comprehensive national bone health program currently does not exist, very few states fund education, public awareness and prevention programs, and existing programs are threatened annually by declining state budgets.
This legislation would implement recommendations of the National Action Plan for Bone Health, which was developed in response to the U.S. Surgeon General's 2004 report on bone health and osteoporosis and the 2008 National Summit on Bone Health.
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