18th International Conference on Integrated Care

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ICT4Life took part in the 18th International conference on Integrated Care “Value for People and Populations: Investing in Integrated Care” in Utrecht (Netherlands) on 23 – 25 May 2018. The event was organised by the International Foundation of Integrated Care (IFIC) in partnership with RIVM and Vilans with the support of HOPE (one of the ICT4Life Consortium partners).

On 25 May, ICT4Life had the opportunity to present its platform at ICIC18. A cluster of five H2020 projects –ICT4Life, Polycare, CONNECARE, ProACT and CAREGIVERSPRO-MMD– presented together a panel on “Digital health and ICT tools for the future: what’s the added value for integrated care?”. The focus was put on four key dimensions:

  • Enhancing the value of care to people: how innovations meet end-users’ needs in integrated care contexts;
  • Professionals’, carers’, and patients’ experience while using the devices;
  • Methodologies and processes to improve integrated care system efficiency and health outcomes;
  • Cost-efficiency of integrated care ICT based solutions and their exploitation.

In 2015, the European Commission funded five projects under the H2020 call SC1-PHC25. The aim of the call was to develop innovative solutions to improve and advance home-based integrated care for people suffering from chronic conditions, including co-morbidities. The solutions produced by the five funded projects –ICT4LifePolycareCONNECAREProACT and CAREGIVERSPRO-MMD–  address this call by increasing citizen’s autonomy and quality of life, allowing them to remain at home supported by families, care-givers and health professionals, thanks to digital integrated care tools.

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To open the session, the presenter Jose Ignacio Aznar Baranda from Polycare submitted to the 38 participants a set of four questions. The two first aimed at introducing the topic and revealed that in 2016, the amount of elderly (65 or over) in the total population of the European Union (28 Member States) was 19,2%, and that 45% of them used internet at least once a week.

The two other questions aimed at collecting the audience opinion on two issues: “Which characteristic do you consider a must for digital IC solutions to cover end-users needs?” and “According to your opinion, how can digital tools best improve integrated care?”.

The results revealed that the majority of the participants value first a “Customized and tailored to patients’ needs” digital tool (52.7%) and solution that are “Kept simple” (41.6%). The aspects “Safe to use” and “Compatible with other devices/applications” respectively scored 5.5% and 0%.

According the majority of the audience, digital tools can best improved integrated care by giving more autonomy to the patient to self-manage (48%) and by easing the communication between all the involved actors (45.5%), far ahead of “securing patient and carers thanks to remote monitoring” (6%). The answer “None of the previous ones” was not chosen by any participant (0%).

After this introduction, the four aforementioned key dimensions were developed, and Isabella Notarangelo from ICT4Life had the opportunity to present key elements of the ICT4Life platform:

  • ICT4Life adopts a people-centered approach to enhance users’ experience and to efficiently target their needs, providing tailored solutions adaptable to flexible contexts.
  • Iterative testing lead from October 2016 to December 2017 and involving 315 users revealed a high acceptance and satisfaction of ICT4Life components thanks to the good usability of the interfaces. The tests also revealed a high correlation between the acceptance of the tools and the following factors: age, previous use of ICT tools, type and stage of disease.

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The conference brought together researchers, clinicians and managers from around the world who are engaged in the design and delivery of integrated health and social care. They shared experience and the latest evidence about integrating Public Health, Health and Social Care and the New roles and Possibilities for Hospitals, producing Positive and Curative Integrated Mental and Physical Care, mobilising key enablers like policy making and Mobile and Digital Health Solutions, and investment in an Integrated Care Workforce, clinical leadership and coproduction with individuals, careers, communities and populations.

Find here the PowerPoint used for the presentation.

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