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History of Orthoteers


The Orthoteers online resource was originally developed by three Orthopaedic Trainees studying for their final FRCS Trauma and Orth exam in 1998.  This was simply a collection of our summaries which we then put on a website for our own access and education.  We noticed that as the site grew with our summaries, there was an overwhelming interest in the site with it receiving over 1.3 million hits per month by 2001.  The website became the preferred education resource for other trainees worldwide studying for their Orthopaedic Postgraduate examinations and well as research for patients and others involved in musculoskeletal medicine. 

OWLS
In 2002 Orthoteers developed and hosted the website for the Orthopaedic World Literature Society Site (OWLS). OWLS is a like-minded group of UK orthopaedic postgraduate trainees who run organised and sociable study groups.  Their summaries and literature reviews form an organised collection of current and key articles. Their summaries are shared online via the OWLS site for their members and other to access.  This links in synergistically with the core Orthoteers material on the new Orthoteers website (www.orthoteers.org).

Junior Orthoteers
The Junior Orthoteers website was developed by post and undergraduate medical students with the aim of providing a site of resource for undergraduate and junior doctors with an interest in Orthopaedics. The content puts more emphasis on basic musculoskeletal examination methods, clinical anatomy and common trauma and elective Orthopaedic conditions. The aim is to provide a quick and immediate reference guide for students, GPs and junior doctors.

Biomechanics
The Orthopaedic Biomechanics section is largely the collective works of an Orthopaedic trainee with an MSc in Engineering and a Professor of Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wales in Cardiff based on the Orthopaedic Engineering Course.  This is one of the most comprehensive Orthopaedic Biomechanics sites available.

Funding
As Orthoteers has grown and its popularity increased, the financing of the site had become too extensive for sole funding.  Up to June 2005 all funding for the website had come directly from the originators. It became unsustainable.  As a result of the website being open source the site had been downloaded and sold on by third parties in various media formats to the detriment of the original Orthoteers resource and ideals. 

With the assistance of an experienced project and business manager the Orthoteers tried to obtain sources of funding to redevelop and expand the website for its users. This was a painstaking task with every possible avenue explored and thoroughly investigated to try and keep Orthoteers as a free site. However, we have been unable to obtain sufficient funding on a long term basis to maintain the website with entirely free access to users. Biomet Europe has been extremely generous by providing funding for site redevelopment and maintenance for the first three years. However, the Biomet Europe sponsorship does not cover the on-going administration costs or any future developments. Therefore, we have had no option but to move to a subscription based website, but with the sponsorship from Biomet Europe, the subscription has been kept to an absolute minimum. 

The Future
We hope that with all of the additional features regular users, past, present and future will be prepared to contribute and subscribe to the website. The updated website, www.Orthoteers.com  represents a huge step forward in terms of content and ease of use. We are certain that Orthoteers website will continue to grow and stay as the world's most popular Orthopaedic educational resource for many years to come.




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