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A new website dedicated to provide independent information for patients undergoing hip and knee replacement surgery in the UK has opened this month. Uniquely, the website, boasts a panel of orthopaedic surgeons and was launched at the British Orthopaedic Association conference in Liverpool.

The Hip and Knee Network was part-funded by the EU and enables patients to access government data on the quality and take up of all hip and knee implants on the market. This is the first time that this data has been presented in an easily accessible way to the public and the Hip and Knee Network has already had a lot of interest in this part of the site from patients undergoing this type of surgery.

A guiding principle of the website is that it is completely independent of the NHS, private medicine, and implant suppliers. All information on the site is produced and/or vetted by a panel of specialist orthopaedic surgeons. Therefore it is the only place on the Internet dedicated to providing high quality, impartial information on hip and knee replacement surgery.

Steve Young, one of the consultant orthopaedic surgeons behind the website explains, “We felt that patients should be better informed, there is a lot of information out there but its either too fragmented or created by people with a vested interest in a particular product or service. We designed the site to present all the information in a straightforward, unbiased, ethical way which will support and compliment the work done by surgeons and physiotherapists with hip and knee replacement patients.”

Other innovations on the site include the ability to search for a surgeon or a hospital conducting hip and knee replacement surgery anywhere in the UK, send in a question to the surgeon panel, and take a test to assess the likelihood of hip and knee surgery.

Mr David Stock, another member of the website’s surgeon panel continues, “This project is about creating a community for patients and surgeons involved in hip and knee replacement surgery. Its difficult for Surgeons to find the time to generate the sort of presence on the Internet that would help patients find the right quality of information. By combining our efforts we can do more to help them.”

The Hip and Knee Network has a secure area for orthopaedic surgeons to network and communicate with each other in private in addition to forums to enable professional debate.

Mr Jon Waite, the third member if the surgeon panel goes on to say, “Its important to understand that this site is not just about the panel involved so far, we are inviting all of our surgical colleagues to get involved and contribute to the debate and discussion. It should become a powerful resource and a platform for new ways of interaction between patients and surgeons.”

The founders hope that with the quality of information available on the Hip and Knee Network it is set to become the first port of call on the Internet for those with an interest in hip and knee replacement surgery.

Notes to editors

• Hip replacement and knee replacement surgery started in the UK in the 1960’s. About 160,000 hip and knee replacements are done each year in the UK and the figures are rising. Some recent research predicts that the number of hip operations will more than treble in the next 20 years.

• The procedure is carried out in over 400 hospitals in England and Wales. The average age of patients receiving hip and knee replacement surgery is reducing.

• Mr Steve Young is an Orthopaedic Consultant from Warwick Hospital. Steve has been a Consultant at Warwick Hospital for 20 years. Prior to this, he qualified in Cambridge, trained in Oxford and Bristol before carrying out a Fellowship in Los Angeles.

• Mr David Stock is an Orthopaedic Consultant from Northampton General Hospital. David trained as a medical student at The Royal Free Hospital undertaking a Clinical Science BSC at St. Mary's Hospital during this time. He was appointed to a training rotation at The Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital gaining his FRCS(TR & Orth) in 1999. David then undertook a fellowship in Arthroplasty and Sports Medicine in Adelaide, Australia before taking up his position at Northampton

• Mr Jon Waite is an Orthopaedic Consultant from Warwick Hospital. Jon trained at Charing Cross Medical School in London, and undertook Orthopaedic Specialist training in Oxford until 2004. He spent a year in Australia on Fellowship training in Knee & Sports surgery initially in Perth and then in Melbourne. Jon has since worked in Swindon and at the Avon Orthopaedic Centre in Bristol before moving to Warwick

For more information about the Hip and Knee Network please contact:

Stephen Ollerenshaw
0870 730 5552

The Hip and Knee Network is operated by
Medical Networks
2nd Floor
Baskerville House
Birmingham B1 2ND

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