Tackling life-limiting hip conditions endured by kids in BC and worldwide, the Peterson Fund for Global Hip Health at BC Children’s will accelerate ground-breaking advances on a global level
VANCOUVER, B.C.—June 23, 2020: The team of hip experts at BC Children’s Hospital aren’t content with their world-leading successes in reducing the local and global burdens of hip conditions among children—they want to see this burden completely gone. And they won’t rest until they succeed.
They’ve seen first-hand what can happen when developmental dislocation of the hip—or DDH, the leading cause of hip deformity in kids—isn’t caught within the first three months of a baby’s life. It could mean a lifetime of challenges—and in the case of nine-year-old Evangeline, it’s already led to three surgeries, a full-body cast, permanent weakness in her right leg, and pain after only 20 minutes of walking, all in just the past two and a half years.
“Evangeline wasn’t diagnosed until far too late—at six and a half years of age, when she was finally referred to BC Children’s. Because of that, she has a higher chance of getting osteoarthritis and chronic pain when she’s older. And she’s definitely going to need a hip replacement surgery, something she most likely wouldn’t have needed had she been diagnosed in time,” says Leah Podgurny, Evangeline’s mom. “These are not things you want to think about when envisioning the future of your nine-year-old daughter.”
June is International Hip Dysplasia Awareness Month, and it couldn’t have come at a more relevant time for the hospital’s orthopaedic team. As they watch global health emerge as a top worldwide issue, in a time when devastating health issues know no boundaries, they’re pursuing a bigger plan to rid the world of the agonizing burdens caused by hip conditions—and they’ve enlisted the help of their global community to make it happen.
“If anything, recent worldwide events like COVID-19 have brought to the forefront the need to come together as a global health community—that our borders are not firm. This global collaboration is also critical to help improve kids’ lives here at home, in BC,” says Dr. Mulpuri, orthopaedic surgeon and lead DDH researcher. “If there is a better concept in practice elsewhere, we can and must learn from that. And if we have any advancements of our own, our ability to share with our global colleagues will have ripple effects in the health outcomes for kids not only in BC and Canada, but around the world.”
With the generous support of Peterson, a BC-based real estate company, the journey has begun towards the vision of a world free from the burdens of life-limiting hip conditions. The Peterson Fund for Global Hip Health will build on the orthopaedic team’s track record of leading advances—including the world’s largest DDH database that has led to tangible improvements in clinical care—in a way that will accelerate global progress in three areas:
- Education: launching two global education programs to foster exceptional talent that will build international capacity, global collaboration, and enriching research and training— ultimately improving the delivery of care for kids in BC and around the world.
- Research: expanding the following initiatives to transform pediatric hip health:
- The International Hip Dysplasia Registry, which aims to increase its current network of 27 sites across seven countries. This global first-of-its-kind research registry in both in its size and scope will help surgeons create protocols for how to screen, diagnose and treat children on a global scale, which will expedite improvements in orthopaedic care.
- The Hip Hope Network for Global Hip Health, which aims to bring together 500 experts in over 20 hip conditions (including DDH) under one network to advance research and share knowledge to improve the quality of care and life for children with hip conditions worldwide.
- Clinical care: establishing care pathways, or tailored step-by-step plans, to provide more effective diagnoses, improve care and lead to better patient outcomes. Considered one of the best hospital tools to promote evidence-based patient care, this effort will take place in countries such as India, China, Ecuador, and Vietnam, in collaboration with experts in those areas.
Despite the advances in hip health made by experts at BC Children’s so far, the need is still great for additional support to catapult these efforts to the next level. With Peterson’s contribution they can continue to make progress in this new phase of work. Peterson, a long-standing supporter of BC Children’s Hospital Foundation, wanted to do what they could to come alongside this team and unleash their vision.
Even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, they chose to act now, knowing that earlier treatment for kids with these life-limiting hip conditions often means more mobility and less pain later on—a life of freedom and autonomy instead of limits. Their generous commitment of $500,000 for this innovative work is part of continuing efforts, kick-started last January by the Chinese-Canadian community, to raise $5 million dollars in critical funds for BC Children’s world-leading orthopaedics program.
“Peterson’s vision is to create something greater—not only in our work, but within our local and global communities, and we do this through meaningful and collaborative relationships and community-building,” says Ben Yeung, Executive Chair and CEO of Peterson. “We are so humbled and privileged to partner with BC Children’s Hospital’s orthopaedic team to support their international collaborations and pioneering advances in hip health, which will not only transform lives of kids here in BC, but around the world.”
“We extend our deepest appreciation to Peterson for their commitment and generosity, which will directly improve the lives of kids in BC and around the world who continue to suffer from devastating hip conditions,” says Teri Nicholas, president and CEO of BC Children’s Hospital Foundation. “It truly takes all of us—a global community—to take these steps toward achieving this vision to free children from the burden of hip conditions, and get them back to being kids.”
About BC Children’s Hospital Foundation
BC Children’s Hospital is the only hospital in the province devoted exclusively to the care of children. As one of the few pediatric medical centres in North America with a world-class acute care centre, research institute, mental health facility and soon, rehabilitation centre, all on a single campus, BC Children’s provides specialized care, innovative therapies and expertise for BC’s kids, including the sickest and most seriously injured. At BC Children’s Hospital Foundation, we have a vision that every child is healthy and able to fulfill their hopes and dreams. The generosity of donors fuels our ability to help conquer childhood diseases, prevent illness and injury, and prioritize the unique needs of kids in every aspect of their care. Please follow us at @bcchf or visit bcchf.ca for more information.
Peterson is a real estate investment, development, property management, capital lending and private equity company. At Peterson, we’re building something greater in each pillar of Peterson and believe in forging long-lasting relationships to create positive change in our communities. With gratitude as our fundamental motivation, the Peter Young Foundation, the Peterson Group Foundation and the Peterson team contribute to the well-being of our diverse community—for today, and the future. We are committed to understanding the needs of our community, to raising awareness for important issues, and to supporting initiatives that make a meaningful difference. Please visit petersonbc.com to learn more.
Emily Stanislaus, Communications Specialist
BC Children’s Hospital Foundation