Says Associate Professor Birthe Dinesen, head of the Laboratory for Telehealth & Telecom Rehabilitation at Aalborg University. She is the initiator of the Transatlantic Telehealth Research Network (TTRN) between Danish and American research institutions and health organizations such as UC Berkeley and the Cleveland Clinic.
Dinesen just helped host a workshop with TTRN and Arctic TTRN (ATTRN) held at Aalborg University November 10-11. The agenda was to review current TTRN research initiatives, development of a network and research platform between Greenland, USA and Denmark (ATTRN) as well as future plans for TTRN.
Over the last 3 years TTRN has been expanding rapidly establishing several new partnerships both in the US and in Denmark, such as the Center for Connected Health at Harvard Medical School, CIMT (Centre for Innovative Medical Technology) at Odense University Hospital, University of Southern Denmark and Aarhus University.
At this workshop, TTRN partners, and a number of international and Danish companies at Aalborg University met to discuss the first results from a joint research project on heart patients. The project has been focused on examining which technologies heart patients of the future will prefer when mastering their own illness in everyday life. Preliminary results from 206 heart patients in the US and Denmark show that patients prefer a mobile phone or smartphone, as the main tool to be in contract with the health care system and to view data about their own health. These first results will be used to define the framework for future research in telemedicine between Denmark and the United States.
The aim is to launch a large-scale trials with heart patients and telemedicine to get a large number of patients included in the study - more than the journey on Danish soil - to test and develop new intelligent technologies in tomorrow's health care system.
Birthe Dinesen explains:
"The United States and Denmark can learn from each other in the use of telemedicine. The Americans have over 20 years experience with telemedicine in large scale, we can learn from. Conversely, Americans like to learn from the Danish healthcare system, which is extraordinary seen with US eyes, since we have unique databases of patients and their diseases for the development of new intelligent technologies.”
The workshop was attended by seven companies and all were very interested in collaborating with TTRN on future research projects to help them develop their products furher by having quick access to new knowledge, the US market and hereby hopefully becoming “first movers.”
The Transatlantic Telehealth Research Network (TTRN) is dedicated to developing cutting-edge research and innovation within telehealth. The research is interdisciplinary (medicine, engineering, nursing, organizational, economic); and focuses on developing new diagnostic, preventive care and treatment methods /technologies for patients in their own homes utilizing telehealth. Problem-based user driven innovation is a key issue in the international and interdisciplinary TTRN. The TTRN consist of major institutions and universities from the US and Denmark. TTRN includes today a national network in Denmark with Aarhus University, DTU, AAU, University Hospital, Vendsyssel Hospital and Esbjerg Municipality. In the USA, TTRN UC Davis, UC Berkeley Citris, Cleveland Clinic & Center for Connected Health by Harvard Medical School (East & West Coast.
The workshop was sponsored by Faculty of Medicine, Department of Health Science and Technology, Aalborg University, Invest in Denmark & Danish Agency for Science, Technology and Innovation.