TeNDER partners to participate in 30th Alzheimer’s conference

TeNDER is pleased to announce that its partners will participate in the 30th Alzheimer Europe Conference (20 to 22 October 2020), which is set to go virtual due to the continuing pandemic.

David Krivec from Spominčica – Alzheimer Slovenija will present partners’ joint paper titled “Co-creation of the intelligent support system with patients.” In this paper, the authors underscore the importance of establishing ways for patients, carers, and professionals to co-design care approaches and services. Such opportunities for collaboration also strengthen communication between health and social care professionals, as well as help extend the independence of patients.

Under the motto: “Dementia in a changing world,” this year’s conference aims to provide a meeting point for people with dementia, those who care for them, Alzheimer’s associations, policymakers, health and social professionals, researchers, and industry representatives from across Europe and beyond.

Restrictions gradually lifting

Image created by Ruth Burrows. Submitted for United Nations Global Call Out To Creatives - help stop the spread of COVID-19.

As restrictions lift across Europe and other parts of the world, it is vital to continue observing certain safety measures and avoiding misinformation.

The World Health Organization, the European Centre for Disease Control, and European national ministries are all good sources; they are up-to-date and provide evidence-based information.

In addition, keep the following tips in mind and apply them to your national, regional, local contexts – reliance on algorithms should never be the only line of defense against misinformation.

Several TeNDER partners have dedicated sections to COVID-19, which are informed by internationally set guidelines like the ones listed above. Several of the links shared below provide material tailored to specific vulnerable groups, such as elderly patients with co-occurring chronic illnesses.

SPOMINČICA – ALZHEIMER SLOVENIJASlovenian and English

SALUD MADRIDSpanish

ASOCIACIÓN PARKINSON MADRIDSpanish

SCHÖN KLINIK – BAD AIBLINGGerman

UNIVERSITÀ DEGLI STUDI DI ROMA – TOR VERGATAItalian

HOPE – EUROPEAN HOSPITAL AND HEALTHCARE FEDERATION – English

The Protection of Personal Data and Why It Matters

With the TeNDER system intending to gather personal and medical information from its users, the consortium will ensure that processing of such personal data will comply with the rigorous legal guidelines set out above and in the GDPR as well as relevant ethical guidelines.

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TeNDER joins COVID-19 security research initiative

TeNDER has joined the Security Research Rapid Response to COVID19 (Sec3R) initiative. Sec3R gathers the expertise of various organisations, institutions, and projects to provide a knowledge platform for public authorities, emergency services, and researchers, among others.

The platform assembles trustworthy and free-to-use resources from within the security research community. These include tools that help secure communications, as well as others that combat growing misinformation surrounding the current pandemic.

In addition, Sec3R will bring together research, datasets, and information on COVID-19, cybersecurity, and other related subjects. Consult the website regularly to access continuously updated resources.

World Parkinson’s Day during COVID-19 outbreak

In 2016, The Lancet’s “Global Burden of Disease” report estimated that 6.1 million people were affected by Parkinson’s disease worldwide, with the number set to double by 2050.

Parkinson’s symptoms gradually develop as cells in a specific part of the brain are affected in ways that impact movement. Researchers across the world work on different dimensions of the disease: from seeking to understand the course of the disease and its possible triggers and predisposing factors, to developing treatments. In the realm of care, projects like TeNDER are working to extend the autonomy of patients with Parkinson’s disease, among others.

Every 11 April – on the anniversary of James Parkinson’s birthday, the physician who first identified the disease in 1817 – people worldwide coordinate to raise awareness of the condition and the social, economic and psychological impact it has on individuals and communities. However, efforts to rally support for patients, as well as for research and access to care, happen year-round. There are local, regional, national and global organisations anyone can reach out to for support.

This year, in the context of COVID-19, many awareness-raising campaigns will take place only online. And in addition to these, groups and organisations have mobilised to provide valuable information for patients with Parkinson’s disease and those who surround them. TeNDER consortium partner Asociación Parkinson Madrid (Madrid Parkinson Association), has adapted guidelines in Spanish for those affected; and the European Parkinson’s Disease Association has also gathered important resources in English.

 

 

Research contributes to the fight against COVID-19

In the context of COVID-19, TeNDER partners – particularly those who work directly with patients – are taking precautions to ensure the safety of patients, carers, health professionals, and the general population.

Spominčica – Alzheimer Slovenia, Servicio Madrileño de Salud, Asociación Parkinson Madrid, Schön Klinik and the University of Rome – Tor Vergata are currently implementing national and international COVID-19 health protocols (follow the links above to learn more).

While doctors, nurses, and other health professionals and staff are working tirelessly in the frontlines, researchers are working on developing curative and preventive care. Many are also studying behaviour, to help improve socio-economic policies and responses.

Advances in the fight against COVID-19 are aided by international research collaboration: research building on research – its successes and its failures. The European Commission has launched special actions to facilitate such efforts. Meanwhile, The Lancet has reported that research organisations across the world have formed a coalition to support resource-limited settings. This is by no means an exhaustive list.

To learn more about ongoing research worldwide, consult research university websites, the World Health Organization’s COVID-19 research database, etc. In addition several news sites and scholarly journals have opened access to COVID-19-related information.

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For practical information on the impact of COVID-19 measures and on international guidelines, here are some additional external resources for specific groups; e.g., elderly people, patients with chronic diseases, etc.:

https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/news-events/information-covid-19-specific-groups-elderly-patients-chronic-diseases-people

http://www.euro.who.int/en/health-topics/health-emergencies/coronavirus-covid-19/news/news/2020/3/mental-health-and-psychological-resilience-during-the-covid-19-pandemic

https://www.alzheimer-europe.org/Living-with-dementia/COVID-19

 

Disclaimer: the information provided in external links does not represent the views of TeNDER.

On dementia

All of us who have cared for patients living with dementia, know this progressive neurodegenerative disease steals memories, identities, and livelihoods. It often starts with mild, barely perceptible symptoms, making it hard to recognise what is happening, and it usually takes years to get a diagnosis. The main factor contributing to its development is age. As ageing populations are a worldwide reality, dementia is having a large social and economic impact.

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What is integrated care?

Integrated care is a broad term that describes how health and social care delivery can be linked and/or coordinated to address issues such as fragmentation and miscommunication, among others.

Though there are different approaches to integrated care, they all part from common concerns: from preserving the quality of life of patients to securing access to quality care in the face of rising healthcare costs.

These challenges are happening side-by-side positive developments, including technological advancements and a growing array of medical and nursing specialties.

In this landscape, an integrated care approach helps ease communication between different care providers (physicians, specialists, carers, etc.) and with patients, and it helps align policies and initiatives with day-to-day health and social care delivery. All this is especially important considering that an increasing life expectancy corresponds with a rise in chronic – and often co-occurring (multi-morbidity) – illnesses.

Applying integrated care models

The World Health Organization (2016), has identified different settings where such models are often applied:

  • across health interventions (preventive and curative);
  • between the health and social sectors;
  • in different clinical settings (hospitals, residential treatment centres, day care, urgent care, etc.), as well as non-clinical settings (administrative, etc.); and
  • at policy and management levels.

The TeNDER integrated care ecosystem will operate across a number of these areas, tailoring its approach to manage issues related to multi-morbidity in patients with neurodegenerative diseases, mainly Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s.

Additional sources on integrated care

If you wish to learn more about the general concept of integrated care and its various applications in Europe, here are some external resources you can explore:

World Health Organization (2016). “Integrated Care Models: An overview,” Health Services Delivery Programme – Division of Health Systems and Public Health.

Mariana Dates, et al (2018), “Health system performance assessment – Integrated Care Assessment (2157303 HSPA),” European Commission.

Expert Group on Health Systems Performance Assessment (2017). “Tools and methodologies to assess integrated care in Europe,” European Commission.

Ellen Nolte and Martin McKee, et al (2008). Caring for people with chronic conditions: A health system perspective. New York, Berkshire: Open University Press/McGraw-Hill.

How can assistive technology respond to new healthcare demands in Europe?

Resolution 60.29 of the World Health Assembly (WHA) on Health Technologies recognises that medical devices are indispensable tools in the provision of medical care for prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation. It also recognises that they are essential to achieving internationally-agreed health-related development goals, including those set by the Millennium Declaration

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