The billboard is part of a nationwide campaign the Amputee Coalition launched around April as National Limb Loss Awareness Month. Located in Duffy Square at 47th and Broadway, the messages will appear on the Clear Channel Spectacolor digital streaming billboard four times hourly, 24 hours a day, through June.
“We are very excited to have this significant opportunity to get the word out about limb loss awareness,” Kendra Calhoun, president and chief executive officer of the Amputee Coalition, stated. “Otto Bock has been a key partner of the Amputee Coalition for many years, and we are extraordinarily pleased to have their support for our public education initiative.”
The Amputee Coalition compiled several statistics for its messages:
The main causes of limb loss are vascular disease (54%), trauma (45%) and cancer (less than 2%);
Sixty percent of limb loss is preventable;
Diabetes and vascular disease are the leading causes of limb loss;
In 2008, hospital charges associated with having a limb amputated totaled more than $7.2 billion in health care costs;
Nearly 60% of the amputation procedures performed in 2008 were paid for by Medicaid and Medicare, totaling more than $5.2 billion in health care costs;
African Americans are four times more likely to lose a limb than non-Hispanic white people;
Seventy-five percent of pediatric amputations are due to trauma; and
Six hundred children lose a limb due to lawn mower accidents each year.
“Many people are unaware of the causes of amputation and often see limb loss in just a few categories: the wounded warrior or the accomplished athlete,” Calhoun stated. “The fact is that limb loss affects every generation, from young to old, and people from all walks of life.”