The aim of EU-CaRE is to improve quality of life and independency of elderly coronary patients (> 65 years old). A network of leading European experts from seven countries and institutes have started this project in order to compare, improve and tailor cardiac rehabilitation programmes for these patients. Moreover, with the results of this study we expect to gain important information about the effectiveness of currently available cardiac rehabilitation programmes for elderly people, with regard to recruitment strategies, sustainability, level of adherence/drop out and the cost effectiveness. Lastly, the e-technology will be tested in a randomized control study.
EU-CaRE in Numbers
Denmark, Germany, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland
Isala (Zwolle, The Netherlands), Region Hovedstaden (Copenhagen, Denmark), Assistance publique – Hôpitaux de Paris (Paris, France), Universität Bern (Bern, Switzerland), StiftungInstitut für Herzinfarktforschung (Ludwigshafen am Rhein, Germany), Servizo Galego de Saúde (Santiago de Compostella, Spain), Azienda Ospedaliero-Universitaria di Parma (Parma, Italy), and Università degli Studi di Roma ‘la Sapienza’ (Rome, Italy).
220 patients per center, included during 2 years
“If I ever need to go through cardiac rehabilitation again, I would do it for sure. The programme enriched my life in many ways. It got me to move and it improved my breathing.”
– Manuel, EU-CaRE patient from Santiago De Compostela
EU-CaRE follows over 1500 patients who have chosen to undergo CR, comprising around 220 patients in each of the eight institutes.. Participants will be monitored at the start of the study, after six months and at the end of a year. Parameters identified as markers of physical fitness will be measured and will serve as a proxy for actual physical endurance, since it is not possible to monitor people over a long duration within a short–term study.
EU-CaRE follows around 238 patients who have chosen not to take CR, but who are willing to participate in a mobile telemonitoring trial. In this case patients will be provided with a smartphone-loaded app provided by consortium member MobiHealth. The app will offer guidance on ways in which the patient can improve their health and will measure and record physical activity and heartbeat frequency and intensity.
Improving the quality of life and independence of elderly heart patients is a major challenge in Europe. Cardiovascular diseases lead, each year, to more than four million deaths in Europe. The burden of cardiovascular diseases is also a major problem, especially in the elderly. Due to the ageing population, the number of elderly cardiac patients will rise further in the coming decades and exert additional pressure on the healthcare system.
There is convincing evidence that cardiac rehabilitation has positive effects on the quality of life for heart patients and also on the reduction of healthcare costs. Awareness of prevention through cardiac rehabilitation has, since the beginning of this century, gained momentum. As a consequence, there are many national and even regional variations of cardiac rehabilitation programmes. This has led to a fragmented approach to cardiac rehabilitation in Europe.
The aim of EU-CaRE is to obtain evidence base to improve cardiac rehabilitation programs regarding sustainable effectiveness and participation level in the elderly.