Project and European Commission
The PONTE project is partially funded by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme.
The PONTE project results from the European Commission's FP7 ICT for Health Research Projects on Risk assessment and patient safety:
"Maintaining a healthy population requires health authorities to manage a range of individual and collective risks. Using Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) provides more flexible and powerful means to monitor, evaluate and manage patients' health risks. The EU is supporting research in this field under the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7).
Risk is an inherent part of health care. For example patients can react badly to specific drugs or drug associations; surgical interventions may lead to complications while delaying them might be even more dangerous and simply admitting patients to hospital exposes them to highly-resistant pathogens, while their medical conditions make them especially vulnerable. Diagnostic, prescription and dispensing errors may all harm patients' health.
ICT has considerable potential to improve risk assessment in healthcare. It enables the gathering and processing of large amounts of data helping policy-makers allocate resources according to healthcare needs. At the level of individual patients, ICT can be used to guide treatment decisions minimise the possibility of adverse side effects and complications. See contribution of ICT to Patient Safety
In FP7, the Commission aims to supports projects which seek to develop advanced ICT applications to improve risk assessment and patient safety.
In 2008, the Commission allocated €30 million for projects focusing on developing systems which can monitor and analyse adverse events, for example unwanted drug effects. Moreover, collaboration between the EU and Latin American healthcare researchers to boost patient safety standards in the area of electronic health records are also supported.
In 2009, the Commission is allocating an additional €28 million to co-fund projects focusing on:
- improving safety of surgical interventions, assisting surgeons in the planning phase and during the intervention to reduce adverse events and optimise treatment;
- improving the interaction between clinical care and clinical research and facilitating the process of selecting patients for clinical trials; and
- tools to improve early detection of public health events (such as outbreaks of viral hemorrhagic fevers) and thus contributing to the improvement of global health security."