11 October 2018

Maria Hopman is creating an e-health program for cardiac rehabilitation together with a consortium of Danish and Swiss companies. The consortium has been awarded a Eurostars grant of € 1.9 million for this program. Starting in 2021, the program will be available for physiotherapists and hospitals in Europe.

Every year, more than 3 million people in Europe experience a heart attack. For half of them, this is not the first time. Most of these recurrent heart attacks can be prevented by improving the lifestyle after the first heart attack, for which patients are often offered cardiac rehabilitation. These programs consist of exercise and lifestyle recommendations. Cardiac rehabilitation is provided at specialized centers.
 
According to estimates, if all cardiac patients were to undergo cardiac rehabilitation, the mortality from myocardial infarctions could fall by 26 percent and hospital admissions by more than 30 percent. Despite these benefits, less than half of cardiac patients receive cardiac rehabilitation. This lack of participation is mainly due the distance to the cardiac rehabilitation centers, which patients experience as being too far. There are also many objections to the limited possibilities for taking an individualized program.
 
Research has shown that an internet-based rehabilitation program can achieve the same results as rehabilitation at a center. An e-health application for cardiac rehabilitation could therefore eliminate many obstacles for patients. However, such an application is not yet available. With Eurostar funding of € 1.9 million, a European consortium of researchers and companies will create CaRe, a mobile platform for cardiac rehabilitation.
 
CaRe is a consortium consisting of the Danish companies Welfare Denmark and Tutee, the Swiss company Ateleris and the research group of Maria Hopman at Radboud university medical center. With the CaRe program, patients can rehabilitate at home. They can set their own goals, maintain contact with their therapist via the internet and follow an individualized training program. The initiators of CaRe hope that this will increase the number of participants in cardiac rehabilitation.
 
CaRe is expected to be available worldwide in 2021 to physiotherapists and hospitals offering cardiac rehabilitation.
 
Eurostars is an EU program of the Eureka network for financing projects led by small or medium-sized companies that spend at least 10% of their turnover or working hours on research activities.

Maria Hopman is member of theme Mitochondrial diseases.

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