Free from UK Landines, Mobiles and Call boxes
The service is provided by nurses with specialist knowledge of osteoporosis and bone health. They can provide you with a personal reply backed up by information provided in electronic or printed format.
Nurses are available to talk between 9:00am and 5:00pm on weekdays except between Christmas and New Year and on Bank Holidays. On Tuesdays the telephone helpline is available from 11am -7pm. Occasionally the telephone service is closed for training when you will be offered a call back from one of the team..
You don’t need a medical problem to use the service – you are welcome to ask any question you may have relating to osteoporosis or bone health, via letter, email or phone call. The service is supported by a large body of scientific and medical advisers to ensure our information is based on the most accurate, independent and up to date knowledge so that you can make informed choices.
Many people with pain, and other problems associated with fractures caused by osteoporosis, get in touch for help and emotional support. Although the nurses are unable to provide counselling or a general befriending service, they often have the skills and information to help. If you are feeling desperate and especially if the telephone helpline is busy you can always contact the Samaritans on 0845 90 90 90, www.samaritans.org or NHS Direct on 111, www.nhsdirect.nhs.uk
From August 1st 2015, calling the telephone helpline on 0808 800 0035 is free from all uk landline, mobiles and from BT call boxes.
You are given the chance to queue – 90% of calls are answered or if you prefer you can send an email or letter.
The nurses will provide up to date evidence based information and discuss your situation if you wish so that you feel better informed. Often they will explain how osteoporosis is currently managed – that is’ best practice’ within the health service - so you know what to expect and the reasons and evidence behind the treatment and care provided. Information is not intended to replace the advice that your own doctor can provide. If you need urgent help then ring 999 for the emergency services.
Emails are answered within 5 working days and letters within 7. An answer will be provided on the Ask the Nurse discussion forum within 48 hours (only open on Tuesdays).
Over 13000 responses are provided each year on drug treatments; risks for fracture; scans and tests; exercise, healthy eating and other lifestyle changes; managing pain and other problems caused by fragility fractures; other issues relating to osteoporosis and bone health.
The nurses use your personal information (such as name and address) for the purposes of dealing with your enquiry. The information is confidential within the team. They will not pass on your details to anyone else. In order to comply with the law or the nurses' professional code of conduct there are rare situations when confidentiality may be broken such as an act relating to terrorism or when the caller is at risk of serious harm from themselves or others. Some demographic information is collected at the end of the call but this is stored anonymously in a way that cannot identify a living person. With our new free phone number comes added confidentiality – the number won’t appear in any itemised phone bill
The service is available for the general public, as well as health and social care professionals. Many people want to discuss their own situation or someone close to them.
No although many enquirers are members. Membership will keep you up to date with the latest information on osteoporosis – it also provides a way to support the charity and the work we do. We receive no statutory funding for this service and rely completely on the support provided by charity membership and donations.
Any comments or complaints about the service to the Helpline Manager/Senior Osteoporosis Nurse. firstname.lastname@example.org
Some calls may be recorded and monitored for training purposes. This is an important part of maintaining quality on the helpline. All calls are kept confidential to the helpline team and are destroyed securely after use. The service complies with the Data protection Act 1998.
Callers who are hard of hearing can use Typetalk; a translation service is provided for calls via Languageline.
The helpline is a member of The Helplines Partnership
Help & Support Forum Support Groups Helpline Services
“Nobody understands what it‘s like to live in pain all day, every day.”
Our helpline If you have questions call our friendly osteoporosis nurses helpline
Registered charity No. 1102712 in England and Wales and No. SC039755 in Scotland. Registered company No. 4995013. Registered address Camerton, Bath, BA2 0PJ Copyright © National Osteoporosis Society 2014
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