Stepping up to the plate for World Osteoporosis Day 2019 | UCB
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Stepping up to the plate for World Osteoporosis Day 2019

Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation
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Scott Fleming, Global Communications & Company Reputation


In 1996, the first World Osteoporosis Day was launched by the National Osteoporosis Society in the UK. Now, 23 years on, every October 20th the world comes together to mark World Osteoporosis Day; a day dedicated to raising global awareness of a silent epidemic that affects 1 in 3 women and 1 in 5 men over the age of 50 worldwide.

With osteoporosis estimated to affect over 200 million people globally, causing more than 8.9 million fragility fractures every year, World Osteoporosis Day acts as a campaign to emphasise the direct link between the condition and broken bones; highlighting the serious, life-changing impact in terms of pain, disability and lost independence. With the incidence of hip fractures expected to increase by 240% by 2050, this annual effort is vital to continue raising awareness of this silent condition, which is only becoming more prevalent alongside the global ageing population.

For those with osteoporosis, there are ways in which the condition can be managed – studies have shown that bone mineral density in postmenopausal women can be maintained or increased with therapeutic exercise. That’s why this year at UCB, we marked World Osteoporosis Day by challenging the whole organisation to take part in a global step challenge, in an effort to highlight the impact of the condition. We challenged everyone at UCB to walk more often, faster and further, and get everyone thinking about their and their family’s bone health.

Our global step challenge has been running for three weeks, with nearly 500 people and 100 teams taking part across the globe to track their steps and keep moving – any way they can – in an effort to highlight the importance of exercise for bone health. The winning team is donating €1,000 to a charity of their choice – plus maintaining their bragging rights as the biggest steppers!

Over the course of the ‘friendly’ competition, we’ve clocked over 69 million steps between us (which is roughly 53,000km!!). We’ve had people salsa their way to an increased step count at our HQ, introduced walking workstations to keep us moving, and held a ‘Bone Gym’ event to highlight some important exercises to maintain bone strength – while still having a lot of fun along the way.

Most importantly, we’ve become increasingly aware of the challenges that osteoporosis presents to patients, and that it’s never too early to start protecting your bones. We hope you will join us in keeping moving in the fight for better bone health for everyone.

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