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A 1994 survey indicated that only 13 health authorities in the UK were purchasing access to dual X-ray absorptiometry (DXA), the most accurate measure of osteoporosis risk. By 1998 the number of centres (including private facilities providing DXA) was 161. All these were sent a questionnaire concerning their activities. 124 (77%) responded, and the survey found that DXA machines operate, on average, for only 3.6 days a week. Funding of and access to diagnostic services for osteoporosis varies greatly. There is clear scope for greater efficiency in the use of existing DXA machines and more equitable access to diagnostic services is required for effective management of osteoporosis.

Original publication




Journal article


J r soc med

Publication Date





22 - 24


Absorptiometry, Photon, Contract Services, Health Care Surveys, Health Services Accessibility, Hospitals, Public, Humans, Osteoporosis, Referral and Consultation, Technology Transfer, Time Factors, United Kingdom