HealthManagement, Volume 12, Issue 4 /2010

Using European Union Structural Funds for Top Quality of Healthcare

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Ms. Gryszowka, from John Paul II Hospital in Krakow, spoke from the fundraiser's point of view. The hospital admits over 22,000 patients annually, performs about 87,000 imaging examinations, functional tests and endoscopies annually using digital technology, and performs about 1,000,000 laboratory tests annually. But how is all this financed?

Well, John Paul II Hospital in Krakow is a leader in Malopolska Region in using Structural Funds of the European Union and other external financial sources. The Hospital has realised 11 projects. The total sum of the projects is 43 million euro and the total sum of the cofinancing is 35 million euro.

For Ms. Gryszowka, top quality is ensured through infrastructure, research and development, technology transfer, telemedicine and international cooperation. For each of these categories Ms. Gryszowka explained how her hospital used funds from the European Union to improve quality.

An example of improving infrastructure was the construction of a specialist emergency ward with diagnostic and logistic infrastructure and a helipad on the roof. The hospital received funds from the EU and the project, which started in 2007, will be fully operational in 2012.

Regarding research and development, the hospital also secured European funding for the development of the Krakow Center for Medical Research and Technology. The primary goal of the project is to establish innovative infrastructure to facilitate a comprehensive delivery of healthcare services and conduction of research using novel technology, knowledge transfer, IT-aided construction of medical databases. In the new setting it will be possible to expand diagnostics, treatment, prevention, telemedicine, health promotion and lifestyle changes, and implementation of information society solutions, education, exchange of specialist knowledge and experience.

John Paul II Hospital has also benefited from structural funds for research and development projects. For example, the project named "innovation transfer in the medical sector from clinics", which was part of the INTERREG IV C programme. The aims of the project are to compare the situation between clinics and SMEs in each participating country in line with their specific healthcare environment and reimbursement system, the development of tools for access of SMEs to the innovation capability in clinics and the implementation of a European wide tool for innovation transfer from clinics to companies.
A telemedicine project is also underway: TCares - Technology Care. An INTERREG IV C (PEOPLE) project, it aims to create better understanding of the needs of system users and purchasers in private and public healthcare sector. To create basic training packages in the field of telemedical technology for the staff, to test telecare systems in private and public healthcare sector and to conduct pilot studies "Action Research" in order to define the needs of system users and purchasers. The goal is then to disseminate best practices to all participating regions. 

Gryszowka's last example of EU funded projects was an international project: [email protected] service for electronification of the European Health Insurance Card, Phase B Initial Deployment. The goal of the project is to start an electronic version of the European Health Insurance Card which successfully completed Phase A3 of the [email protected] project funded by the European Commission and eTen. The initial deployment project phase (Phase B) is extending implementations to enable healthcare access for European citizens providing evidence of entitlement in 305 service units and 566 service points across the participating countries. 

Ms. Gryszowka, from John Paul II Hospital in Krakow, spoke from the fundraiser's point of view. The hospital admits over 22,000 patients annually, perform

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