Europe's healthcare systems are facing a huge challenge, with limited financial resources, an elderly population predicted to rise by more than 50% by 2050 and the prevalence of chronic diseases also on the increase. This will place a tremendous economic burden on governments, care professionals, employers and consumers. Telemedicine services have the potential to improve the lives of many chronic diseases patients while relieving part of the actual burden from health institutions.
During the first semester of the RTF project good practice guidelines describing telemedicine services for Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) were created. The present document describes good practice guidelines concerning telemedicine services for one of the main chronic diseases, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).
Diabetes Event in Odense, Denmark. The focus of the meeting was to discuss telemedicine related applications in diabetes treatment. The participants also had a site visit at Odense University Hospital. The Estonian eHealth Foundation was represented at the meeting by Peeter Ross, Project Expert and Monika Tartu, Project Manager.
On 13-15 October, 2010, a first international eHealth Conference "Have an eExperience in Tallinn" took place in Tallinn, Estonia. The main purpose of the conference was to share positive and negative practical experiences encountered during the Estonian nationwide Electronic Health Record System implementation process. Approximately 400 invitations were sent, and there were 128 participants representing different countries and organisations from all over the world - Finland, Holland, China, Slovakia, France, Estonia, Sweden, Latvia, Norway, Czech Republic.
During the conference the Estonian eHealth Foundation's team also introduced the purpose and results of the RTF project. We had a desk with informational materials as well as a RTF project banner. At the conference we distributed RTF information leaflets and presented the COPD guidelines document. Article about the RTF project was also included in the conference programme brochure.
The conference was a success, and it was a good opportunity to introduce the RTF project to such a distinguished international audience. More info on conference available here: www.ehealthtallinn2010.org
On October 19, 2010 Peeter Ross participated at a seminar at the East Viru Central Hospital (Eastern part of Estonia) in order to provide an overview of the RTF project to the hospital board. The audience consisted of the CEO of the hospital and the heads of clinics. There were 6 persons participating at the event.
On November 11, 2010 we had a seminar "Integrating telemedicine services with everyday health care services" in cooperation with our Estonian Telemedicine Association. The main focus of the seminar was on RTF activities and results. Overview of the project as well as the presentation on COPD guidelines were provided. COPD related issues were discussed in depth once we had pulmonologists, health insurance and industry representatives present. Approximately 60 invitations were sent out, and there were 25 participants. The event was quite interesting and participants were interested in taking part of the future events on related topics.
Prior to the seminar a press release was issued introducing the event and the purpose and content of the RTF project. The press release was published by the most important Estonian healthcare publications.
On November 24th the Estonian eHealth Foundation representatives met with PosAM team (www.posam.sk) in Bratislava, Slovakia.
The Estonian eHealth Foundation was represented by Madis Tiik, Peeter Ross, Monika Tartu, Erkki Leetsar, Artur Novek ja Piret Simmo. Madis Tiik, CEO of the Estonian eHealth Foundation, gave an overview of the activities of the Estonian eHealth Foundation and the current e-health developments in Estonia. Dr Peeter Ross introduced RTF activities and the COPD guidelines. Mr Oskar Kadlec, Project Manager of PosAm, gave a presentation on PosAm activities and goals. Possible cooperation was also discussed and invitation of PosAm team to visit the Estonian eHealth Foundation was extended.
On November 26th we met with representatives of the CHRONIOUS project at the Azienda Ospedaliera Careggi. We were met by Valentina Nepi, PR Manager of Azienda Ospedaliera Careggi. The Estonian eHealth Foundation was represented by Madis Tiik, Peeter Ross, Monika Tartu, Erkki Leetsar. CHRONIOUS project was represented by Dr. Eng. Roberto Rosso (Tesan), Prof. Raffaele L. Dellaca' (Politecnico di Milano www.polimi.it), dr Antonio Corrado (Azienda Ospedaliera Careggi). Madis Tiik gave an overview of the activities of the Estonian eHealth Foundation and the current e-health developments in Estonia. Dr Peeter Ross introduced RTF activities and the COPD guidelines. Since the CHRONIOUS and RTF projects both focus on enhancing telemedicine solutions in order to promote wider implementation of telemedicine, we found it is a good basis for future collaboration. This kind of collaboration will enable us to promote sustainability of the projects.
The Estonian eHealth Foundation is also participating in a new project proposal e-Medic (Interreg IVA Central Baltic programme). The aim of e-Medic is to develop the methods of telemedicine used for stabilizing of diabetes. The benefits of remote measuring and consultation will be observed through testing and research based data, aiming at better quality and efficiency of the services. We are planning to use the RTF project good practice guidelines in e-Medic in order to develop the best telemedicine pilot solutions. Participation in e-Medic will help to ensure the sustainability aspect of RTF.