This past weekend, the Boston Globe began running a three-part series examining the impact of hip fractures on the lives of elderly patients. The articles focus on the life-altering experience that this injury often proves to be, demonstrating its impact on patients and their families as well as on the health care system.
Over the course of the past 18 months, Globe reporter Alice Dembner and photographer Bill Greene followed a number of hip-fracture patients beginning with their admission to BIDMC, through their surgeries and hospitalization to their post-operative recovery in rehabilitation and nursing home settings, and finally, in their homes. (Of course, the patients and families gave permission to be followed in this way, and then written about.) Among the current BIDMC physicians participating in this long-range project were orthopedic surgeons Doug Ayres and Edward Rodriguez and gerontologists Suzanne Salamon and Katy Agarwal.
The series began on Sunday, Dec. 10 and appeared both in print and on the Globe’s website, boston.com (where extra features are available.) As part of the project, Dr. Salamon will also participate in an online "web chat" Tuesday, Dec. 12 from noon to 1 p.m. This web session is expected to kick off a new Globe/boston.com weekly feature entitled "Ask the Doc." Here are the links to Part I and Part II and the sidebar features associated with the main stories.
I think you will agree that this is a powerful set of stories, laying raw human emotions in front of all us to see. Congratulations to the Globe for allocating the resources to this project and to the reporter and photographer for presenting it in an incredibly thoughtful and sensitive way.