Planning future sustainable health care

IFIC was represented at the recent European Regions for Health, EUREGHA, high-level ‘Changing Today for Tomorrow’ conference in Brussels.
Director of Programme Dr Toni Dedeu was one of about 70 delegates from organisations across Europe participating in the conference to plan the heath care of tomorrow.
Its objective was to look at the changes needed to ensure sustainable and effective care for future needs. The conference also underlined the importance that input from the regions will play.

Dr Dedeu presented on the value and advantages of integrated care. He told colleagues that without an integrated approach there are typical problems of disintegration, which can be seen as a complex “web of care” around a patient.
This can often lead to:

  • Lack of “ownership” of the person’s problem
  • Lack of involvement of users and caregivers in their own care
  • Lack of communication of partners in care
  • Simultaneous duplication of tasks and gaps in care
  • Treating one condition without recognising others
  • Poor outcomes for the patient, the caregiver and the system

Dr Dedeu explained how integrated care can contribute to meeting the triple aim goal in health systems by improving:

1. the user’s care experience (satisfaction, confidence, trust)
2. the health of people and populations (morbidity, mortality, quality of life,       reduced hospitalisations)
3. cost-effectiveness of care systems (functional and technical efficiency

Dr Dedeu said: “While most countries have integrated care on their political agendas so far, no country has truly challenged the status quo or pre-dominance of a hospital-led and medical approach to healthcare. This shows that it is not enough to focus on the ‘how to’ of integrated care. A complete systems change is needed.  Building systems of integrated care is a complex task involving simultaneous attention at macro-, meso- and micro-level. Key factors of success are dependent on technical skills and capacities, but also on cultural norms and values, management and leadership, and sensitivity to the context in which systems grow.”
For more information about the EUREGHA conference click here.

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