Acclaimed AO Surgery Reference sweeps awards

Fifteen years after its debut, the AO Surgery Reference (AO SR) continues to demonstrate its value as an evidence-based resource for the management of fractures.

The AO SR, launched in early 2006 with just a handful of anatomical region modules, today is a rich and widely consulted resource covering orthopedic trauma (including pediatrics), spine, craniomaxillofacial, and veterinary specialties, and attracting as many as 63,000 visitors per week. In late December 2020, the AO SR was recognized with a wide array of honors, including:

  • 2020 eHealthcare Leadership Platinum Award in the Best Healthcare Content category and a 2020 eHealthcare Leadership Gold Award in the Best Overall Internet category . Sponsored by Plain-English Healthcare, the eHealthcare Leadership Awards program recognizes the very best websites, digital communications, and business improvement initiatives of a wide range of healthcare organizations.
  • 2020 W3 Silver Award in the General Websites-Healthcare Services category. The w3 Awards celebrate digital excellence by honoring outstanding websites, marketing, video, mobile websites and apps, social media and podcasts created by some of the best interactive agencies, designers, and creators worldwide. The competition is sanctioned and judged by the Academy of Interactive and Visual Arts , an invitation-only body consisting of top-tier professionals from a who’s who of acclaimed media, interactive, advertising, and marketing firms.
  • 2020 Digital Health Gold Awards in the Digital Health Media/Publications Medical Education category and Mobile Digital Health Resources Mobile Website category. The Digital Health Awards recognize high-quality digital health resources for consumers and health professionals. The awards program is organized by the Health Information Resource Center (HIRC), a clearinghouse for professionals who work in consumer health fields.

‘Still going strong’
“All of these awards confirm the AO Surgery Reference’s value and its relevance in terms of excellence, innovation, and its role as a reliable source of surgical knowledge for our many users,” says AO SR Manager Lars Veum. “The eHealthcare Leadership Platinum Award in the Best Healthcare Content category really demonstrates the quality of our medical content and shows that this valuable tool is still going strong after 15 years. Since 2005, about 170 surgeons around the world have contributed—as authors and editors—to the AO SR’s high-value content.”

That high-value content includes around 32,000 illustrations, 10,000 pages in general, 340 surgical approaches, 1,400 descriptions of injuries and/or pathologies, and 5,000 treatment pages. As an online resource, the AO SR is continuously evolving to keep pace with surgeons’ needs, Veum said.

“For example, in early 2020, we completely redesigned the AO SR website, and the w3 award shows that we are on the right path,” he explained. “In the first quarter of this year, the AO SR team is conducting useability testing to gauge how we can further improve the site.”

AO SR Executive Editor Michael Baumgaertner, who joined the AO SR Editorial College in 2017, was very pleased to hear of the recent accolades.

“Never in my career have I been associated with a program that continually improves and so effectively responds to the needs of our clinicians,” he said. “We are blessed with access to not only the world’s thought leaders in orthopedic trauma but an absolute expert team of managing staff and illustrators who are dedicated to translating that surgical experience and knowledge into a resource that is easily accessed and ultimately imbedded into the practice of fracture surgeons worldwide.”

The awards, Baumgaertner explained, further demonstrate the AO’s leadership in continuing professional development.

“The AO, which instituted and has continuously championed the groundbreaking AO SR since its 2005 inception, has earned these independent accolades that further support the AO’s position as the global benchmark in providing authoritative continuing professional development for its learners,” he said.