In addition, two new features will soon be added. The Quick Track feature enables users to enter their accomplishments on the fly; Fit Feed/Friend Feed isn’t a recipe collection but a real-time update that enables users to see how their friends are doing in reaching their goals and to send them a note of encouragement or congratulations.


Published 3/1/2003
Frank B. Kelly, MD

Enhance your image through public relations

Free materials from AAOS make it easy

Think you can’t afford a public relations program? Think again! The AAOS has a wealth of materials for you to use—and they’re all free!

Whatever shape your practice, hospital, clinic, state, or specialty society public relations program takes, you’ll find materials that will enhance and expand it.

Making a presentation? Check out the Community Orthopaedic Awareness Programs. Participating in a health fair? Pass out posters, postcards, or bookmarks. Hosting a local medical meeting? Traveling displays on the history of orthopaedics and injury prevention will dress up the session room. Here are just a few of the materials available to you, along with ideas on how you can use them to enhance your image.

COAP presentations
The Community Orthopaedic Awareness Program (COAP) includes 15 ready-to-go presentations, each of which comes with a tool kit, electronic PowerPoint presentation, script, images, and audio and video files. Simply personalize and you’re ready for your next speaking engagement. Among the topics available are injury prevention, pediatric issues, back pain, osteoarthritis, hand injuries, and patient safety.

Several publications are available for your reception area and speaking engagements, including two of the most beautiful soft-cover, full-color coffee table books produced for the specialty of orthopaedics: Moving Stories: Seventy-five Years of Orthopaedic Surgery and eMotion Pictures: An Exhibition of Orthopaedics in Art.

As part of the 75th anniversary celebrations last year, the AAOS produced two films on the history of orthopaedics: Moving Pictures and Orthopaedic Allegro. Both are available for you to share the story of orthopaedics. Play them in your reception area or anywhere you have DVD capability. They are certain to get the attention of your patients, colleagues, and the public.

Traveling Exhibits
Two exhibits are currently offered at no charge—the Academy’s historical traveling exhibit, Moving Stories: The Traveling Exhibit, and an injury prevention patient education booth, Prevent Injuries America!®

These make great pass-outs or leave-behinds in your reception area, community health fairs, or local speaking engagements. Each bookmark includes tips printed front and reverse; Osteoporosis Prevention for Adults and Children and Patient Safety is No Accident are available. Orthopaedic Surgeons: Who Are They And What Do They Do? is a short pamphlet that describes the role of the orthopaedic surgeon in musculoskeletal health.

Public service announcements
AAOS public service announcements, my personal favorite, are available in a wide range of formats, from posters and postcards to radio and television spots. Several are in Spanish, and all are available for your use. The following are just a few ideas showing how you can use these entertaining, educational materials:

  • Begin with your own office or hospital. Frame the posters and hang them in your patient reception and examination rooms. Let the CD of television ads run con­tinuously in your reception room.
  • Use postcards in combination with COAP materials, as invitations to your public education presentations, or distribute them at your speaking engagements with appropriate health tips printed on the back.
  • Distribute at public events, your local library, veterans’ office, senior centers, schools, merchants, health clubs, day care centers, health fairs, or other community events.
  • Use the postcards as appointment reminders, direct mail pieces, or handouts to patients.
  • Mail the postcards as thank-you notes, or send them to media after an interview with a brief follow-up idea.
  • Send the postcards or posters along with a personal note to your state legislators or local officials to educate them about issues relating to orthopaedics.
  • Distribute them to staff at your clinic, hospital, or university.

Boney Ben, Muscle Molly
These two endearing characters were created with the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America to educate young patients about their bones and muscles. They are available in either poster or postcard formats and can be used in your office with younger patients or as hand-outs to students if you’re speaking at an elementary school.

Tool kits
Several tool kits are available online to help you with your public relations campaigns, including the COAP tool kit, a public service announcements tool kit, and the public relations and media relations manual.

Web portal
The new Web Portal is a comprehensive, interactive Web site with everything your patients need to know about their knees—from staying healthy and preventing injuries to exercises, knee problems, and treatment options. Prescription pads imprinted with the Web address are available for your use.

You can view and order all these materials online (

Frank B. Kelly, MD, is chair of the AAOS Communications Cabinet. He can be reached at

Let’s make exercise social
More than 150 million people worldwide are active users of the Internet’s social network on Facebook. To reach this new audience, the AAOS has created an exercise application, “Get Up! Get Out! Get Moving! Let’s Exercise!” Features of the application include the following capabilities:

  • setting individual fitness goals (promoting weight-bearing exercises)
  • tracking those goals
  • joining teams
  • challenging friends on Facebook to meet and/or beat your personal or team goals
  • competing to earn points with people around the globe to get healthy, strengthen your bones, and get into the game of life

If you, your family, friends, peers, colleagues, or patients have a Facebook account, check out this new offering from the AAOS. Get started at