European Health Award 2014

Winner & short-listed projects

We would like to congratulate the winning project EpiSouth Plus.
The EpiSouth Plus Project is aimed at increasing health security in the Mediterranean Area and Balkans by enhancing preparedness to threats, which can affect health security, and to bio-security risks at national/regional levels in the framework of International Health Regulation implementation. Building upon the Network of 27 EU and non-EU Countries established by the previous project EpiSouth (2006-2010), the whole initiative has lasted more than seven years (2006-2014). The project has strengthened countries' capacity to cope with health threats through concerted and coordinated capacity building activities, including the establishment of a Mediterranean Regional Laboratories network; promotion of common procedures in interoperable Generic Preparedness and Risk management among the countries involved in the Network; enhancement of Mediterranean Early Warning Systems (EWS) allowing alerts and Epidemic Intelligence (EI) information sharing among EpiSouth countries and developing interoperability with other Early Warning Systems, including the European EWRS; production of guidelines and a strategic document based on assessments and surveys aimed at facilitating IHR implementation.

Participating countries: Italy, France, Spain, Bulgaria, Greece, Cyprus, Malta, Romania, Slovenia, Croatia plus 18 non-EU MS.

Two videos explaining more about the activities of the Network can be accessed here:

EpiSouth Plus Short Video (8 mins 41 secs)
EpiSouth Plus Long Video (21 mins 08 secs)

SHORTLISTED PROJECTS

Project 1: ITAREPS (Information Technology Aided Relapse Prevention Programme in Schizophrenia)

The ITAREPS system (Information Technology Aided Relapse Prevention Programme in Schizophrenia) represents a mobile phone-based e-Health solution for weekly remote patient monitoring and disease management in schizophrenia and psychotic disorders in general. ITAREPS provides health professionals with home telemonitoring via a PC-to-phone SMS platform that identifies prodromal symptoms of relapse, to enable early intervention and prevent hospitalisations. The participants of the programme are patients and their family members. The programme was developed by the Prague Psychiatric Centre in 2005. Based on available evidence, ITAREPS is capable of reducing the risk of rehospitalisation down to one-fifth.

Participating countries: Czech Republic, Slovak Republic and Japan

Project 2: SALUS (Scalable, Standard based Interoperability Framework for Sustainable Pro-active Post Market Safety Studies)

The main aim of SALUS is to complement on-going medical drug safety studies through a scalable and standard based interoperability framework which specially focuses on postmarketingpharmacovigilance activities. Post-marketing pharmacovigilance can be defined as the science of detecting, assessing, understanding, and preventing adverse effects of drugs or other drug related problems once the drug is on market. The SALUS project fosters the integration of clinical care information from electronic health records (EHRs) into clinical research systems to enable proactive post-marketing safety studies for early detection of potential safety issues.

Participating countries: Italy and Germany and partners from Switzerland, France, Sweden, Belgium, The Netherlands and Turkey

Project 3: ExplainTB

ExplainTB is a crowd charity project that offers free educational videos in several languages at the point of care: more than 300 volunteers worldwide contributed content, translations, proof-readings, voice-overs or acted as doctors in the films. The app allows the display of movies and written information in about 28 languages. The audio-visual content also teaches populations that are out of reach for print material. ExplainTB helps the healthcare worker to overcome the language barrier, allows patients to learn about their disease in their mother tongue and provides relatives with essential information about prevention of transmission. Furthermore, ExplainTB allows governments to publish national guidelines and country-specific information on a mobile point-of-care platform. Access to all videos can be gained via an app or by scanning a QR code from a poster. The posters are available on www.explaintb.org. The website allows the creation of bi-lingual handouts with individually tailored written information. Available since November 2013, ExplainTB has registered access to its website from over 80 countries. More than 2500 regular users access the information.

Participating countries: Not applicable, videos in 16 languages, written material in 33 languages, 12000 visitors registered from over 80 countries

Project 4: EpiSouth-plus Project

EHA 2014 winning project.

Project 5: Euro-Peristat

The Euro-Peristat project’s aim is to develop a high quality, innovative, internationally recognized and sustainable European perinatal health information system, producing data and analysis on a regular basis for use by stakeholders including clinicians (obstetricians, neonatologists, midwives, and neonatal nurses), policy makers in health ministries, maternal and child protection offices, and insurance and quality assurance agencies as well as pregnant women and their families. The project began as part of the EU’s Health Monitoring Programme and relies on an active network of European perinatal health professionals (clinicians, epidemiologists, and statisticians). Euro-Peristat’s data serve as evidence for key stakeholders making decisions about mothers and babies´ health in Europe. Each of their reports has been downloaded over 3000 times and in a web evaluation of 100 high-level stakeholders, 80% of respondents rated their publications very useful for their work. Over 200 news articles have been published on their results which have generated multiple debates about care provision to mothers and children.

Twenty-nine countries currently participate in Euro-Peristat, including 26 EU member states and Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland

Project 6: EUTrigTreat

Electrical heart disease leading to arrhythmias represents a major public health issue because it increases the risk for sudden cardiac death (SCD). Current SCD prevention strategies are not directed at the underlying risk mechanisms. The EUTrigTreat project elucidates molecular and environmental mechanisms, which underlie life-threatening cardiac arrhythmias, and how genes and external factors modulate and initiate catastrophic electrical abnormalities in the heart. Improved understanding of key arrhythmia mechanisms enables EUTrigTreat investigators to develop mechanism-targeted diagnostic and therapeutic approaches including novel drug and device therapies. These important objectives are investigated by a multidisciplinary research team including clinical and basic scientists together with small-to-medium enterprises, and through a coordinated large-scale collaborative excellence project.

Participating countries: Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, The Netherlands, Switzerland, U.K. and USA.

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