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Page updated on June 4th, 2009

Health is a main concern for all of us.
We all want to be and stay healthy. So when a health problem or condition arises, we wish to have access to the best and most reliable medical treatments that science and the health care system can offer.

One of the main aims of the European Commission is the protection and improvement of the health of EU citizens.
In this context, being able to measure and compare the performance of the different European health systems is key in allowing mutual improvement. Providing reliable and transparent information is a sure way to promote quality and fight inequalities.
The EUPHORIC project contributed to this wide-ranging objective by building specific tools. These tools can support the quality assessment of the output of hospitals and thus of the different European health systems.

Interview: Mr Gaiba, testimonial
An account of a transplant experience and the return to a totally normal and full life.

The EUPHORIC project selected and tested outcome indicators so as to evaluate the quality of some of the medical treatments provided by European health systems.
But what are indicators?

Interview: Marina Torre, project leader
What are outcome indicators and how are they used in the health field.

During the first phase of the EUPHORIC project a list of health outcome indicators was collected, thanks to the work of all the partners.
Based on existing literature, 54 indicators were grouped in nine main pathology-related categories. Two of these, Orthopaedics and Cardiovascular, were chosen for thorough testing and validation in pilot projects. Those particular areas were selected due to their broad impact on public health.
A third pilot, on Risk adjustment and statistics, provided the necessary methodological support to the other two.

Interview: Jaume Marrugat, responsible for the cardiovascular pilot
Development of the database to allow hospital benchmarking and to compare themselves with other hospitals with similar characteristics.

The project produced a common indicator database that can allow for quality comparisons between hospitals of the same or different national health care systems.
Individual health institutions may access the database to perform a confidential 'self-benchmarking' exercise, comparing their performance to the best-in-class in the database.

Interview: Gerold Labek, responsible for the orthopaedic pilot
Cut the number of revisions (example, Scandinavia) and reduce the costs for health systems.

In addition, the orthopaedic pilot highlighted the importance of using registers to reduce the percentage of revision operations. This was a highly relevant finding that can result in significant quality improvements for the patients and in overall savings for the community.

Throughout the work plan, EUPHORIC closely coordinated with other projects in related areas.

Interview: Unto Häkkinen and Arpo Aromaa
The relationship between EUPHORIC and other European projects.

Assessments and comparisons between hospitals and health systems are an opportunity to identify institutional weak points and bottlenecks. They also present the opportunity to learn from the best performers, allowing better service to patients and improving the management of limited human, equipment and financial resources in the health sector.
All this adds up to an improvement in public health.

Interview: Marina Torre, project leader
Hopes for the future and for the use of results as useful tools in making decisions in the health field.