ProMIS interviewed Vaiva Almasova, deputy director for general affairs of Centro policlinic / Young50 project manager and Sandra Saboniene, director adviser of VVCentro policlinic, Member of Young50 project managing team.
They described in brief the activities and the results obtained during the Young50 project
Describe Centro Poliklinika and its role in the project.
Centro Poliklinika is one of Lithuania’s largest outpatient personal healthcare institutions, and one of the partners in EUPAP project. The health care clinic has approximately 123,000 patients registered and nearly 1 million visitors per year, and is often referred to as a clinic of reforms, innovations, and progress. And is one of the leading actors within its field in, in Lithuania. The vision for Centro Poliklinika is to be an innovative, modern, healthcare institution with reliable personal that can provide the highest standard of medical services, with the aim to motivate people to make healthier choices. The clinic strives to implement new effective medical and information technologies in order to always improve the quality of services to be able to provide high quality care to their visitors.
In Lithuania nurses and midwife been involved in YOUNG50. The consulting room started operating on 25 September 2021. The consulting room has been open on Saturdays and some working days.
Present your Young50 prevention program results adapted in your country. Which are the main finding and lessons learn to give evidence?
The screening program in Lithuania, Centro policlinic started in September 2021.
The method chosen for the invitation of the patients was phone call.
At the beginning we opened consulting office only for Saturdays, but seeking to invite more patients we opened it also on working days (evenings). This was really convinient for them.
The screening process went very slowly because of pandemic situation and Russia’s aggression in Ukraine.
Potential participants were really concerned about the general situation due to the war.
The attitude of health care specialists to the project is positive, but they mentioned some negative aspects:
- Partial duplication with the national preventive program.
- Health care professionals were really busy with the vaccination process.
- So, they had especially increased workloads.
Seeking to involve more health care specialists it needs:
- To assign health professionals who would work jus with Young50 program.
- More active dissemination of information to health care professionals and other interested parties;
- To ensure financing of the project.
Which have been the problems incurred the criticalities and the mitigations actions undertaken by your organization?
For Lithuania main challenges were:
- Partial duplication with the national program for prevention of cardiovascular diseases in Lithuania, which is provided to men from 40 to 55 years old, women from 50 to 65 years old.
- Lack of health care professionals who would be interested in taking part in projects in general.
- Low activity of participants for the following reasons:
- “It’s not interesting, it’s irrelevant, there’s no time for that now”
- “I already take care of my health”
- “I don’t want to participate because the risk of infected diseases has increased”
- Patients’ emigration – some of selected patientients were abroad.
In purpose to invite more patients it’s needed:
- To choose a wider range of laboratory tests – vitamin d, ferritin, iron, etc.
- To give more benefit to patients – after identifying the patient’s problems, it is recommended to refer the patient to a family doctor, dietician, psychologist and other specialists.
- To actively disseminate and inform since it plays important role to health care professionals and other interested parties.
For the successful project implementation in Lithuania, the Ministry of Health should be assigned to coordinate the project seeking to:
- To involve more health care institutions that the project could cover the whole country.
- To involve Public Health Bureaus, as this institution should be the leader for participant counselling on healthy lifestyles.
- To involve Universities of Medicine, as they play an important role in training of health care specialists.
To ensure the cooperation between the mentioned responsible institutions.
- To contribute the finances.
The Centro Poliklinika team have presented the objectives of Young50 to the Ministry of health. During the meeting, the clinic described how the program was adopted to the local setting and how the implementation process has been conducted. There is interest in Young50 in Lithuania, and the Ministry of health are aiming to integrate Young50 in existing National prevention program in Lithuania and to find the E-Health solution to record all the data in the information system but at this point it is not clear exactly how or when this will happen.