HEPRO gets international attention Print
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Wednesday, 01 February 2006 13:47

Cooperation with the World Health Organisation enables HEPRO to reach more than three million people across Europe.

 

The WHO wants to distribute the health profiles from HEPRO (Health and social well being in the Baltic Sea Region) to the rest of Europe.

- We intend to identify the health conditions in almost 30 municipalities in the Baltic Sea Region
through giving their inhabitants the opportunity to personally express how they experience their health situation. We shall use this knowledge to put necessary preventive and health promoting implementations into action. The profiles will eventually form a recipe for efficient public health work, to be used throughout Europe, says project leader Arvid Wangberg.

The WHO takes part
Dr. Premilla Webster, from the University of Oxford, is regarded as one of the world´s leading experts with regards to health profiles.

- The project seems well prepared. We regard the profiles as an important tool to improve public health. The profiles show how the inhabitants regard their own life situation and their local environment. Thus, they can be used to put health questions on the political arena. If the project succeeds, it will be an important contribution to the development of public health work in
Europe. I believe that they will be of great benefit, she says.

According to Webster, it is not always easy to compare statistics on health conditions from different regions, as they are developed in different ways. An important asset to HEPRO will therefore be a joint mapping tool, to be used throughout Europe.

Strengthening local democracies
The partners in HEPRO face many similar health challenges. They all experience heavy expenses with regards to treating sick people. The aim is therefore to improve preventive and health promoting implementations, so that they do not have to help all the sick people that need treatment today.

Wangberg points out that strengthening local democracies is an important part of the project. 

- We know that a well-developed local democracy has a positive effect on the health situation of its population. Now, we must use our result, so that the inhabitants in the participating councils get more influence in their local environment, he says.