Skip to main content

St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital 2nd Breakfree FLS Site in Newfoundland and Labrador

June 2024

In March 2024, the Eastern-Urban Zone of Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) Health Services established the BreakFree Fracture Liaison Service (FLS) at St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital funded by the Brookfield Chair in Fracture Prevention.

The FLS program, began assessments in May 2024 based on Osteoporosis Canada’s evidence-based research and recommendations and together with the Brookfield Chair in Fracture Prevention have collaborated to implement the second of its kind in Newfoundland and Labrador.

St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital serves as the primary facility for individuals sustaining fragility hip fractures in the province, attending to approximately 330 patients annually. This evidence highlights the importance of secondary fracture prevention, employing an FLS model grounded in a comprehensive 3i approachidentifying patients predisposed to future fractures, conducting osteoporosis risk assessments/ investigations, and initiating tailored treatment regimens on an individualized basis. The FLS program’s role also includes an education piece that addresses optimal nutrition for bone health and strategies for fall prevention.

Horizon Health Network’s Dr. Everett Chalmers Regional Hospital

Photo (left to right): Dr. Nick Smith, Dr. Gillian Morrison, Dr. Allison Pridham, Kelly Dwyer, Tanya Whiffen, Tina Parrill

The BreakFree FLS program aligns with the province of Newfoundland and Labrador’s overarching initiative of developing and implementing interventions that will enable and empower seniors to transition seamlessly through age and health-related changes with dignity and autonomy, as outlined in the Health Accord for Newfoundland and Labrador (February 2022) and the Senior Friendly Program at St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital.

Launching this initiative through the orthopedic service at St. Clare’s, eligible patients will be identified and assessed by an FLS coordinator, in close collaboration with the healthcare team. Kelly Dwyer assumes the role of FLS coordinator.  She will be collaborating with and receiving full support from FLS champions Dr. Nick Smith (Orthopedic Surgeon), Dr. William Moores (Division Head and Orthopedic Surgeon), and the FLS Medical Lead Dr. Gillian Morrison (Geriatrician).

The collaboration and work between both The Brookfield Chair and Osteoporosis Canada is part of a major initiative to foster and seed fund new FLS programs across Canada.  Since the start of the partnership between both groups, the result has seen the fostering of new FLS sites in provinces previously without an FLS program, despite years of substantial advocacy and efforts.

The BreakFree FLS together with Osteoporosis Canada has now funded new programs in four provinces with St. Clare’s Mercy Hospital being the most recent location to implement the FLS program.