Facilitating optimal fragility fracture management across the Asia Pacific throughout 2021

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Despite continuing to navigate the highly complex COVID-19 pandemic landscape this year, we have nonetheless, made significant headway at APFFA, in fulfilling our mission – to drive policy change, improve awareness, and change political and professional mindsets to facilitate optimal fragility fracture management across the Asia Pacific. We have celebrated some significant milestones this year, with the launch of our Hip Fracture Registry Toolkit in June, and participation in various virtual conferences, including the WCO-IOF-ESCEO, ASBMR, and ESA-SRB-ANZBMS. Most recently, we staged a successful virtual booth at the IOF Regional 8th Asia-Pacific Osteoporosis Conference between December 1-2, 2021.

Here is a summary of our 2021 highlights.

The Hip Fracture Registry Toolbox

In partnership with the Fragility Fracture Network (FFN), APFFA developed an innovative, world-first, Hip Fracture Registry (HFR) Toolbox, to address the alarming rate of death and disability caused by the more than one million hip fractures sustained in the Asia Pacific each year.

Launched on June 15, 2021, this practical and informative resource explains the fundamental need, and how to best advocate for, the establishment of a national hip fracture registry. Tailored to clinicians, hospital administrators, healthcare systems and governments alike, the Toolbox covers pertinent topics, including stakeholder engagement and consolidation, building a case for change, planning and funding a registry, to setting up a pilot registry, and navigating governance and ethics approval. Examples of current registries and other useful resources also feature in the Toolbox.

To download the Toolbox, head to

To compliment the launch of this useful asset, we launched an easy-to-reference, HFR Toolbox infographic, which can be found here, and our very own YouTube channel, housing a series of educational videos featuring leading clinicians from the Asia Pacific bone arena, reflecting on important considerations for each of the seven key steps involved in establishing a hip fracture registry.

This followed the successful launch of the APFFA PCP Education Toolkit in late 2020 – a comprehensive, educational asset designed to arm primary care physicians (PCP) with practical resources to aid the identification, assessment and ongoing management of those at risk of fractures, and thereby improve the safety and quality of patient care. The PCP Education Toolkit contains a host of materials and templates to enable the planning and execution of two, one-hour-long, PCP workshops:

  • Highlighting the growing burden of fractures;
  • Identifying patients at high risk of fracture; and
  • Reinforcing the importance of secondary fracture prevention.

There have been more than 240 downloads of the PCP Education Toolkit since its official launch in September 2020.

World Congress on Osteoporosis, Osteoarthritis and Musculoskeletal Disease (WCO-IOF-ESCEO)

Staged from August 26-28, 2021, this world-leading clinical conference on bone, joint and muscle health comprised a scientific program developed by the members of the Committee of Scientific Advisors of the International Osteoporosis Foundation, and those from the Scientific Advisory Board of European Society for Clinical and Economic Aspects of Osteoporosis. The programme strove to improve delegate’s understanding of bone metabolism and pathology, and featured new strategies and options for prevention, diagnosis and treatment. The virtual sessions enabled participants to engage in live interactions, while pre-recorded content was made available to registrants for three months post- Congress. Our APFFA abstract submissions for the PCP Toolkit and HFR Toolbox were presented at this conference.

The American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR) – Annual Meeting

The ASBMR Annual Meeting – the world’s largest and most diverse meeting in the bone, mineral and musculoskeletal research field – attracts more than 3,000 attendees from over 70 countries, including clinicians and researchers who specialise in various disciplines.

Held in San Diego, USA, this year participants were also invited to attend the ASBMR meeting virtually, between October 1-4. APFFA submitted a poster to this meeting.

APFFA Education Chair, Past President of the International Society for Clinical Densitometry (ISCD), and Visiting Scientist at the Garvan Institute for Medical Research, Professor Rob Blank, Sydney, attended the event virtually, and acted as the presenting author of the APFFA PCP Education Toolkit poster.

Endocrine Society of Australia (ESA), Society of Reproductive Biology (SRB) and the Australian and New Zealand Bone and Mineral Society (ANZBMS) Annual Scientific Meeting

ESA-SRB-ANZBMS held a hybrid virtual and face-to-face Annual Scientific Meeting between November 21-24, in Melbourne this year, in which APFFA participated. A poster for both the PCP Education Toolkit and the HFR Toolbox were accepted at this virtual conference, and our poster submission was further complimented by a three-minute e-Poster video.

The event included an outstanding international and national plenary of speakers from all societies, and a program that covered state-of-the art advances in the fields of Endocrinology, Reproduction and Bone and Mineral Research.

IOF Regional 8th Asia-Pacific Osteoporosis Conference

This year’s key Asia-Pacific conference held December 1-3, enabled physicians, clinical researchers, and allied health professionals to learn about the latest clinical advances, and how to provide optimal patient care. The programme canvassed:

  • Regional approaches to osteoporosis risk assessment and treatment;
  • Themes for optimising skeletal health;
  • Nutrition, exercise and bone health; and
  • Development of Fracture Liaison Services (FLS).

‘Meet-the-Expert’ sessions also offered conference delegates the opportunity to discuss topics of clinical importance with world experts and key opinion leaders.

APFFA was invited to stage a virtual booth for this year’s conference, within the Committee of National Societies (CNS) village. Titled ‘APFFA – Facilitating Optimal Fragility Fracture Management Across Asia Pacific’, our virtual booth featured:

  • Poster 1 – APFFA Primary Care Toolkit: Empowering Fragility Fracture Education;
  • Poster 2 – APFFA-FFN Hip Fracture Registry Toolbox: A resource to support registry implementation;
  • Video 1 – Practical aspects of establishing hip fracture registries: Registry planning and funding;
  • Video 2 – Establishing a comprehensive fragility fracture care program; and
  • Resource 1 – APFFA-FFN Hip Fracture Registry Toolbox infographic.

The booth also directed delegates to the APFFA website, APFFA LinkedIn Channel, and APFFA YouTube channel.

Co-Chair of the APFFA Joint Steering Committee, and Deputy Medical Director, Head of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery, and Consultant Orthopedic Surgeon at Beacon Hospital, Petaling Jaya, Dato’ Dr. Joon-Kiong Lee, Malaysia, produced a supplementary virtual booth audio narration to provide conference participants with a succinct explanation of APFFA and the assets housed in our virtual booth.

APFFA also hosted a joint session with the Asia Pacific Consortium on Osteoporosis (APCO) on the second day of the conference (December 2),and presented key insights into best practice management strategies for osteoporosis and post-fracture care for the Asia Pacific region.

During the conference, APFFA Co-Chair, Professor Derrick Chan, Taiwan, led sessions on ‘Early post-fracture management’ and ‘Balance vs Exercise Training to Prevent Falls’, while Co-Chair of APFFA’s Hip Fracture Registry Working Group, Professor Jacqueline Close, Australia, presented on the ‘Development of Hip Fracture Registries in Asia’.

According to APFFA Project Manager, Adjunct Associate Professor Paul Mitchell, New Zealand, 2021 marked a significant year for the organisation, which culminated in a noteworthy presence at this key regional professional event.

To learn more about APFFA and our resources available to PCPs, researchers, and allied health professionals, visit


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