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It is now widely recognised that technologies that support Assisted Living, including telecare and telehealth, can play an important role

The South East Health Technologies Alliance (SEHTA) has been awarded a three-year contract under the Interreg IVC programme to support CASA – a European-wide project involving 14 organisations to work jointly on policy development for the acceleration of innovation in the field of Assisted Living. SEHTA was chosen because of its expertise in the field of telecare and telehealth and its experience of working on major European projects.

Many European countries are facing an unsustainable situation as citizens across the continent are living longer resulting in demographic changes that are placing increasing pressure on health and social care.

The cost of pensions/health in the long-term is expected to increase by 4-8% of GDP by 2025*. In 2011, there were four people working for one retired person in Europe, but forecasts indicate that by 2050 there will be only two people working for every one retired individual.

"It is now widely recognised that technologies that support Assisted Living, including telecare and telehealth, can play an important role in achieving large efficiency gains as well as helping patients and people needing care,” says Dr David Parry, CEO of SEHTA. “Such technologies need to be developed, tested and integrated as regional health and social care systems undergo redesign and move towards preventive as well as self-managed care.”

SEHTA’s contribution to the CASA project will be on the development of the telecare and telehealth sector. SEHTA has been focused on the telecare and telehealth market for the past four years and now has a dynamic network of more than 1,500 contacts in companies, medicine and academia in the UK and internationally.

SEHTA’s first task in the CASA project is to host an international workshop to showcase the Whole System Demonstrator (WSD) programme results to international partners. WSD is the largest randomised control trial of telehealth and telecare in the world, involving 6,191 patients and 238 GP practices in England. WSD was set up to look at cost effectiveness, clinical effectiveness, organisational issues, effect on carers and workforce issues.

Findings from the study showed a 45% reduction in mortality rates, 20% reduction in emergency admissions, 15% reduction in A&E visits, 14% reduction in elective admissions and 14% reduction in bed days.

Also as part of its CASA contract, SEHTA will participate in other international workshops, imparting and sharing its own experiences of telecare and telehealth with industry, clinicians and academia.

Other CASA partners include: Flemish Ministry of Health (Brussels region)
Province Noord Braband (NL), Kent County Council (UK), Local Health Authority of Verona (IT), Local Health Agency Bassa Friulana (IT), NHS 24/Scottish Centre for Telehealth and Telecare (Scotland), Region of Southern Denmark (DK), Regional Centre of Social Policy in Poznań (Poland), Ministry of Health of the Catalan Government (Spain), Timis County Council (Ro), Foundation Iavante (Spain), New Tools for Health Association (East Sweden) and Region Halland (Sweden)

* European Commission, Information Society and Media Directorate Unit

Editors Notes:

For further information about CASA, please contact:

Kathy Vuillaume
International Project Manager
Email: kathy.vuillaume@sehta.co.uk,
Tel: +44(0) 7734 606 187

For further press information, please contact:

Glen Goldsmith
SEHTA press office
Tel: +44 (0) 1483 811 234
Email: glen@2thefore.co.uk

About SEHTA – www.sehta.co.uk

The South East Health Technologies Alliance (SEHTA) is a company limited by guarantee, owned by its 1300 members.

Its mission is to facilitate the profitable and sustainable growth of companies and service providers in health and social care and the health technologies sector – pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, medical devices diagnostics and telelcare/telehealth.

SEHTA drives collaboration and provides support services to members from
Academia, Business and Care/Clinicians to address UK and international market needs

About Whole System Demonstrator

The Whole System Demonstrator (WSD) programme is the largest randomised control trial of telehealth and telecare in the world, involving 6191 patients, 238 GP practices across three sites, Newham, Kent and Cornwall. WSD was set up to look at cost effectiveness, clinical effectiveness, organisational issues, effect on carers and workforce issues. It focused on three conditions, diabetes, COPD and coronary heart disease.

The findings of the trial show that, if delivered properly, telehealth can substantially reduce mortality, reduce the need for admissions to hospital, lower the number of bed days spent in hospital and reduce the time spent in A&E.

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