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MEDUSE — Result In Brief

Project ID: 28350
Funded under: FP6-CITIZENS
Country: France

Healthy interaction for improved healthcare

Social scientists and non-academics traversed the boundaries of their disciplines to exchange knowledge and experiences in health and medicine. Results of this initiative stand to impact policy on emerging technologies, home healthcare and patient organisations.
Healthy interaction for improved healthcare
The 'Governance, health and medicine. opening dialog between social scientists and users' (Meduse) project worked to initiate dialogue between social scientists and non-academic actors in the areas of medicine and health. Professionals, patient organisations, decision-makers and policymakers made up the main actors in the second group.

The EU-funded project focused on three issues of policy relevance identified by the Fifth Framework Programme's (FP5's) 'Identifying trends in European medical space: contribution of social and human sciences' (ITEMS) thematic network. These were the dynamics of European patient organisations, emerging new technologies and responsibilities for home healthcare in the context of European systems and cultures, and cross-national and European perspectives on health safety agencies.

Meduse approached its objectives through the organisation of three conferences, one for each of the three issues. Between 60 and 80 participants allowed for diversified representation, experiences and points of view, as well as easier exchanges among the delegates, which included both targeted groups.

Exchanges centred on questions relevant to the scientific and political agenda, knowledge needed to address these questions, and best suited modalities of partnership between social scientists and non-academic actors for producing the required knowledge.

To make the discussions as inclusive and participative as possible, participants were split into three random groups; they held discussions following the plenary presentations of papers on each theme. Group facilitators ensured discussions stayed on topic, and respondents provided a verbal summary at the close of each session on which participants could comment. This set-up made it possible for all participants to meet and enabled widespread sharing of ideas for greater impact.

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